PUBLIC SERVICE CHALLENGE
If you see a cat roaming your neighborhood and if you TRULY want to help save cat lives instead of just SAYING you do, then take action and get that cat fixed BEFORE you find a nest of newborn kittens like Phoebe and her little family.
How do you know if the cat you see roaming is fixed or not?
One indicator is a tipped ear. If no tipped ear, then you need to capture them and assess them. Get help if you need it, but do it NOW. It may be a neighbor's cat, it may be a stray, it does not matter. If it's unfixed, it WILL result in kittens.
If you do only the very minimum for a single roaming cat:
- neutering $40 (APL)
- spaying $50 (APL)
- required rabies $12 (APL)
These costs are far less than the costs associated with a litter of newborn kittens.
And you can't really claim you were surprised to find a nest of kittens if you had been seeing the cat roaming around without a tipped ear because I am telling you IN ADVANCE that unfixed roaming cats WILL ABSOLUTELY result in newborn kittens — probably at your house if you ignore them and do nothing.
BEFORE YOU GRAB UP THAT LITTER OF KITTENS:
Dear trapper friends, please help spread the word to the community to leave kittens where they’ve been found.
Newborn kittens are too fragile and need feeding by volunteers overnight every two hours.
There are not enough people who can do this exhausting work and ultimately most die.
Please tell anyone who asks, that kittens with their eyes closed and full bellies should be left alone.
We’ve been going out to trap for moms of these kittens and 9/10 times she is trapped in less than 24 hours.
She has not abandoned her kittens.
But again, there are also not enough of us to trap for these moms.
I suspect most community members bringing in these kittens are in areas with significant colonies and are taking the opportunity to remove kittens to decrease the amount of future cats, which I do understand but if we can divert any coming in, even before 2-3 weeks, it will allow volunteer and staff resources to go further helping more cats and kittens and the kittens will have a better chance at survival.
I appreciate your help in educating the public.
So if you do grab up that litter of kittens and you call a rescue or shelter to take the mom and kittens off your hands for whatever reason you cite as preventing YOU from caring for them, below is the financial burden that YOU are expecting THEM to assume because YOU did not take action earlier.
The anticipated costs per cat or kitten include, but are not limited to:
- $65 initial family vet exam (Henderson Animal Care)
- $27 gets one month of food & treats (please consider giving for more than one month)
- $12 gets one month litter (please consider giving for more than one month)
- $50 Neuter via Animal Protection League
- $35 Vaccinations: (Rabies, Distemper, Leukemia) (APL)
- $5 Earmites (if present) (APL)
- $18 Wormer (Rounds, Hooks & Tapes) Profender
- $35 FIV/FeLV SNAP Test (APL)
- $30 Microchip (APL)
These costs do not even consider a shelter or a rescue's time and trouble caring for YOUR litter of kittens.
When a rescue takes in YOUR litter of kittens, they now have three jobs that they did not have before:
1 ) Care for YOUR kittens around the clock, house them, feed them, scoop their litter box, medicate them, and more
2 ) Start begging kind-hearted and generous animal lovers to contribute and help cover the costs of caring for YOUR litter of kittens
3 ) Start posting photos, advertising, conducting adoption events, and more to find homes for YOUR kittens
All that cost and trouble could have been avoided if you had taken action when you saw that roaming cat without a tipped ear.
Back to the PUBLIC CHALLENGE:
I challenge any reader witnessing one or more roaming cats without a tipped ear to capture and vet them. Do a good deed. Do it now.
If you cannot keep them or find a home for them, then after vetting, release them back to their original location – not a different location.
One spay or neuter can prevent over 100 kittens from the same cat.
Be part of the solution and not part of the problem.