Young-Williams Animal Center celebrates 100,000 spay/neuter milestone with free surgeries for 100 pets

February 24, 2021

Young-Williams Animal Center reached a milestone of 100,000 spay and neuter surgeries for pets and surprised the owner with a free procedure, along with free surgeries for 100 other pets in the community.

The celebration of the success of the shelter’s Spay/Neuter Solutions program coincides with World Spay Day on Feb. 23. The pet owners who received the free procedure had made an appointment in advance for their pet’s spay/neuter surgery, not knowing about the surprise. The free surgeries were made possible by support from the Aslan Foundation and Petco Foundation.

Dr. Lisa Chassy, medical director for Young-Williams Animal Center’s Spay/Neuter Solutions, celebrates with the shelter team and Zelda, the recipient of the 100,000th surgery on Feb. 23 at Chilhowee Park aboard the mobile Spay Shuttle. Standing, from left, are Stephanie Barrett, John Rausin, Richard Angel and Dr. Cornelia Porter of Young-Williams Animal Center, along with Zelda’s owner, Kelcie Chandler, and Janet Testerman, CEO of Young-Williams Animal Center. The celebration also included free spay or neuter surgeries for 100 pets in the community.

“We are grateful to have the opportunity to give back to a community that cares so much for animals and for the support of our generous sponsors,” says Janet Testerman, CEO of Young-Williams Animal Center. “A proven way to reach our goal of a ‘home for every pet’ is to stop unwanted litters that create even more homeless pets. Our Spay/Neuter Solutions’ 100,000 surgeries put us closer each day to reaching that goal.”

Since 2007, the Spay/Neuter Solutions program has offered surgeries through its mobile Spay Shuttle and in 2011 added the public spay/neuter clinic at Young-Williams Animal Village at 6400 Kingston Pike. The Spay Shuttle increases access to low-cost surgeries by bringing services directly to pet owners in their neighborhood.

The Spay/Neuter Solutions program, including the Spay Shuttle, performs more than 10,000 spay and neuter surgeries a year on privately-owned pets. This prevents new litters of up to 30,000-plus homeless pets in Knoxville and Knox County each year. To learn more about Spay/Neuter Solutions or to schedule an appointment, call 865-215-6677 or visit

At its highest point of intake, Young-Williams Animal Center took in almost 18,000 lost and stray pets each year. Now, with the help of Spay/Neuter Solutions, the Spay Shuttle, Community Cat program and the strengthened partnership with Animal Control and local organizations, the shelter has seen a drop to 9,000 homeless pets coming through its doors each year.

“We are continuing to work toward lowering the number of homeless pets in our community every year through new programs and community outreach,” Testerman says. “I again want to thank our supporters, donors and volunteers for making this possible.”

The milestone of 100,000 doesn’t include the thousands of spay/neuter surgeries performed each year at the main shelter location at 3201 Division St., for adoptable pets before they leave the care of Young-Williams Animal Center.

To donate, the community can visit, click “Donate” and select the box to support Spay/Neuter Solutions. Gifts also can be made by check and mailed or delivered in person to Young-Williams Animal Center at 3201 Division St., Knoxville, TN 37919.

For more information about charitable donations, please contact Stephanie Eastman-Vozar, director of development, at [email protected] or 865-215-6664.

About Young-Williams Animal Center
The vision of Young-Williams Animal Center is “a home for every pet.” It is the municipal shelter of the City of Knoxville and Knox County, and each year takes in more than 9,000 animals.

As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Young-Williams Animal Center serves the needs of lost, unwanted, abandoned and neglected animals. The center’s mission is to lead the community to end pet homelessness, promote animal welfare and enhance the human-animal bond through the shelter and placement of animals, spay/neuter initiatives and public education of companion animal issues. Young-Williams Animal Center reminds pet owners to spay and neuter their pets.

Young-Williams Animal Center’s main facility is located off Sutherland Avenue at 3201 Division Street. Young-Williams Animal Village satellite adoption location and public spay/neuter program is located at 6400 Kingston Pike.

Both locations are open seven days a week from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. The shelter closes from 1-2 p.m. for an hour of quiet time for the animals. For more information about Young-Williams Animal Center, call 865-215-6599 or visit