Many of us have experienced the feeling of sadness and helplessness when seeing a stray or feral cat fending its way outdoors with no one to care for them, often wondering what their story may be or can they be helped? Fortunately, there are many ways you can empower yourself or others to make a positive difference in these cat’s lives. Take for example, the previously feral kittens currently at our hospital who are up for adoption. Their mother “Mama” was a stray cat with her 4 kittens who were abandoned and trying to survive by living under an apartment building. Her kittens never had human contact so were literally untouchable without trying to run away in fear of their lives. They are now socialized, fuzzy, lovable kittens ready to have their forever home. If it were not for Dr. Sechrest and our staff, they would have continued their fight for survival and been another group of homeless cat leading very difficult lives.
At the Cat Hospital of Portland and Cat Hospital for Cats we are fortunate every day to be able to be advocates for the well-being of cats and make a difference but did you know we couldn’t do it without our clients and those in the community like yourself?
Do you want to know how to be a hero and help these cats too? Well here are some tips:
• First acknowledge that without a home, a cat will suffer unnecessarily without help from people. Even though some of the most feral of cats can be perceived as independent, appear to be able to fend for themselves, the reality is that they are untamed domestic cats that rely on humans to stay safer and healthier. You alone may be the first or only person to protect and help the homeless cats you witness wondering in any particular area. Please don’t look the other way.
• The next step is to help prevent ferals and strays by addressing the overpopulation of cats:
• This starts in our own home with our own cats by spaying and neutering as soon as possible and spreading the word to others about how important this is. Sadly, over 2.7 MILLION animals are euthanized every year. This doesn’t include the thousands of un-homed cats that fall prey to other causes such as motor vehicles, disease, or other animals. Kittens can have kittens as young as 5 months of age!
• Furthermore, consider taking responsibility for a stray or feral cat by first contacting a veterinary hospital such as ours or contacting a place such as the Neighborhood Cat Advocates in Chico to get the cat examined and spayed/neutered. Adult feral cats are not socialized to people, which means they cannot be adopted in most situations. The NCA does TNR (trap, neuter, release). It is amazing what an individual like you can do for these feral cats and how you can prevent more of them from being produced. This may include learning how to trap and neuter them to volunteering your time at organizations such as the NCA.
Call the Neighborhood Cat Advocates Hotline for help: 530-324-2292