Subsidised neutering

Our subsidised neutering service will soon be changing. From 30th of April, our current scheme that operates in Northern Ireland will be closing and a new voucher scheme will take effect. Please read our Q&A where we explain these changes and why we have made them. In the meantime, the scheme is still available at Northern Ireland participating vet practices. Further information on the scheme is at the bottom of this page.

For help related to neutering within England, Wales and Scotland, please check local services which may be able to offer assistance.

 

Neutering FAQs

What are the changes?

The public neutering and existing voucher scheme in Northern Ireland is set to close at the end of April 2022. Our Vets and Local Authority partners have until this time to access help on behalf of their clients. As such, all neutering operations under this scheme must take place no later than 30th April 2022.

Vets will have a further month to submit invoices online via the Dogs Trust neutering Portal. After 1st May 2022  this will close, and any outstanding invoices will need to be sent into our accounts payable team for payment.

Under the new scheme, invoices and vouchers must be sent directly to Ballymena rehoming centre from 1st May 2022.

 

Why are these services being cut?

Although the public scheme will be coming to an end, our neutering voucher scheme isn’t being cut, but refocused.

The new voucher scheme will allow us to direct help in a focused way to dogs in the rescue system, and in doing so, ensure that our funds are spent effectively and with maximum impact. By focusing our activity, we are more able to provide support that can be measured and evidenced.

We will be measuring and reviewing the new scheme over the next year  with a possibility of expanding if the impact and our aims are achieved.

 

Which rescues / areas are you working in?

3 Local Authority pounds within Northern Ireland.

What is the intended impact and aim of the new scheme and how will success be measured?

We will be able to monitor requested vouchers and their status – whether they are issued, claimed, unclaimed. A reminder letter for the adopters with issued voucher if rehomed from a Council pound. We hope to improve standards with these 3 pounds to improve the rate of neutering in their rehomed dogs.

If I am contacted by someone who has a question about the neutering scheme, who shall I put them in touch with?

Enquires about the new scheme should be sent to [email protected] or phone calls to 020 7837 0006

For payment enquiries, please contact accounts payable.

To extend a neutering voucher on the old scheme, please contact the above email address and our Community Engagement team will get back to you.  

 

If a member of the public already has a neutering voucher, can they still use it?

Yes, all physical and e-vouchers will be honoured until the end of April, so the neutering operation has to take place by the end of 30st April 2022. For operations after this time, please contact us to request an extension.

If a dog qualifies under the neutering scheme, can they still have the operation?

If the operation takes place before the end of April, yes.

If members of the public cannot afford to pay to have their dog neutered, what can they do?

In the first instance we would suggest that they speak to their local vet to confirm what the costs would be, and whether there are any payment plans available to help them stagger the payments.   The vouchers are very limited, so access to these vouchers from members can only be considered where there are welfare concerns, and the situation is extremely vulnerable. In these cases, they can reach out to Ballymena rehoming centre.

 

Why does the website still have information on the old neutering scheme?

This will be updated by the scheme closure date.

Can rehoming centres still issue neutering vouchers for rehomed dogs?

Yes. Dogs Trust rehoming centre vouchers are a separate system, funded by the rehoming centre budget, that covers the cost of neutering, should the dog not be able to be neutered before they are rehomed and should the adopter be unable to return the dog to the rehoming centre for neutering post-adoption.                                                                                                                                                              The Dogs Trust rehoming centre vouchers are only for dogs rehomed from Dogs Trust, not dogs rehomed from any Council pounds, other rescues or welfare organisations in Northern Ireland. We do not hold a budget to allow for extra vouchers beyond Dogs Trust dogs in our care or post-adoption.

 

Under our current scheme, Dogs Trust works with vets to provide subsidised neutering for dog owners living on means-tested benefits in Northern Ireland. We work with in partnership with Veterinary Practices to deliver our subsidised neutering programme. Through these partnerships, the cost is reduced to the owner to as little as £50 – the rest of the cost of the routine procedure is covered by Dogs Trust. 

Dogs Trust subsidised neutering is available in Northern Ireland for those who meet the following criteria:

Is in receipt of means tested benefits:

  • Income Support
  • Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • ESA
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Housing Benefit
  • Council Tax Reduction/ Council Tax Support
  • Universal Credit Pension Credit or a tenant of the NI Housing Executive 

Owns one of the following listed breeds:

  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Mastiff
  • Rottweiler
  • American Bull Dog
  • Greyhound
  • Lurcher
  • Akita
  • Husky
  • Malamute
  • German Shepherd
  • Samoyed
  • Jack Russell Terrier
  • Collie
  • Crossbreeds where one of the breeds is identifiable as one of those listed above

If you are a resident of Northern Ireland and are unsure if you qualify, or want to find your nearest participating vet, please call our neutering hotline: 0333 202 1148

If you qualify under the scheme, and have booked an appointment with a participating vet, simply take along proof of benefit and photo ID (or two forms of other ID) when you attend your veterinary appointment. The vet will charge you £50 and the rest of the cost will be settled by the vet with Dogs Trust. 

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