Gary, please forgive me for all the nasty things I've said about you.
Pet contraception gets boost from billionaire
Posted by Deb Wood, special to The Oregonian October 16, 2008 15:18PM
Spay and neuter surgeries are currently the only form of contraception for cats and dogs. The result is too many unwanted pets being euthanized in shelters.
On September 30, I wrote a column about the Portland-based Alliance for Contraception in Cats & Dogs and their efforts to find a non-surgical way to permanently sterilize cats and dogs.
Today, the organization announced that they have an important new partner. Billionaire inventor (and human doctor) Gary Michelson is promising a $25 million prize to anyone who comes up with a feasible dog and cat contraceptive. He's also offering grants totalling up to $50 million to encourage research in the area.
Michelson made his fortune inventing medical devices, mostly to help orthopedic surgeons like himself. He formed the nonprofit Found Animals Foundation in 2005 to use scientific and innovative thinking as part of the solution to pet overpopulation problems.
"Found Animals recognizes that the research required to develop and test novel approaches to pet sterilization will take time and money," said a press release that came out today from the Found Animals Foundation and the Alliance for Contraception in Cats & Dogs. They believe the $25 million Michelson Prize and the $50 million earmarked for research grants will initiate and maintain promising research in the field.
"Surgical spay/neuter procedures are just too expensive and inconvenient for many pet owners -- we need a better solution. We hope that the Michelson Prize and Grants in Reproductive Biology will encourage the best and brightest minds in science to take on the challenge of developing an innovative non-surgical sterilization product that will ultimately prevent death and suffering for millions of cats and dogs worldwide," said Aimee Gilbreath, the executive director of the Found Animals Foundation.