This year’s Super Bowl was competitive, but hardly as dog-eat-dog as the Scotland County Humane Society’s recent “Speuter Bowl” essay contest, say organizers.
Designed to educate local elementary school students about pet care and the importance of spaying and neutering animals, the “Speuter Bowl” essay contest is one element of the Humane Society’s “Pet Responsibility Education Program” (PREP).
The two most recent winners of the essay contest were fifth graders Trinity Cox of Pate-Gardner School and Samantha Bowen of Covington Street School.
The winners were announced at recent PREP assemblies at the respective schools.
In her essay Cox wrote about the value of pets to their human owners and also about how it is incumbent on humans to hold up their end of the bargain by spaying and neutering their animals.
Citing the fact that 3.7 million pets are euthanized yearly, Bowen wrote that a “lack of loving homes” makes spaying and neutering an important responsibility.
“The benefits of spaying and neutering are that your pets will live longer, happier, healthier lives. Spaying or neutering also helps control pet overpopulation,” Bowen continued.
Bowen also appealed to pragmatists, saying that the relatively low cost of spaying or neutering could help owners avoid the much greater expense of caring for new puppies or kittens.
The PREP program was adapted from a similar program in Moore County to fit the needs of Scotland County.
According to organizer Marcie Nor, PREP includes a six-part, 50-60 minute per week program presented to the fifth grade students in Scotland County during their guidance class period.
Tailored for the fifth grade audience, Humane Society Board Member Kathy Murphy said that the program is designed to teach the important lesson of pet responsibility at an age where it is most likely to make an impression.
And that learning can pay off — literally. Essay contest winners at each school receive a $50 gift card from Wal Mart as well as a voucher for the free spaying or neutering of one of their pets or of the pet of a family member.