Maryland has taken a huge step toward protecting its community cats! In November, the Maryland Department of Agriculture awarded almost $600,000 in grants to fund crucial spay/neuter services for caregivers of community cats and low-income pet owners.

The grants are the second round of awards provided by Maryland’s new spay/neuter program, designed to reduce the number of cats and dogs killed in shelters. Nineteen nonprofits and government agencies across the state received the funding to bolster their lifesaving work. The grants cover community cats for the first time, and will fund thousands of surgeries and vaccinations.

Alley Cat Allies has partnered with communities, shelters, and animal welfare groups all around Maryland to make humane change, so we are thrilled to see the government actively working to protect cats. These new grants emphasize Maryland’s changing mindset toward its community cats, and its growing support for humane policies like Trap-Neuter-Return.

The Maryland Department of Agriculture plans to unveil its third call for grant proposals in January, which will provide more funding to protect cats and dogs around the state. We look forward to seeing how many lives the grants save, and we will keep you updated on further progress for cats in Maryland.