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The downside of kitten season has begun...

post #1 of 39
Thread Starter 
My rescue has been really good at pulling a lot of cats from an animal control in Spotsylvania....but recently we haven't been able to adopt out as many cats and thus...we have been "full" for a few weeks...which means the animal control is forced to euthanize many cats. It just makes me sad!

post #2 of 39
I am so sorry Katie. Yes, aren't limits terrible things to have to face? I am sure your rescue is as "full" as it can possibly be -- animal-lovers really do their best to find and make room for as many as they can -- so please keep in mind that you are able to help even SOMETIMES, and that relieves some of the pressure to kill for space.

Setting and living with limits is, IMO, the only responsible way to operate. It applies to adoptions and foster, it applies to doing events, and to volunteers, too! I am facing the point where we have to be clear about not being publicly funded (so far, our few grant proposals haven't "flown" :-)). Our key volunteers really WANT to be able to "do it all," yet we have to be realistic: you cannot fix 30 years of unmanaged cat population in a couple of months. It's hard, I think, particularly for the women among us, because, by nature, we are "fixit" types, we want to be able to HELP people and animals.
post #3 of 39
You are wonderful people doing a wonderful job. Without you all those cats you have saved would still be suffering. It is sometimes hard to live within limits but we do have to accept them, just like you are doing.
post #4 of 39
Thread Starter 
Thank you sooo much....we placed 3 cats tonight. I hope this is a good weekend for cat placements as we just got a new "mom" with 8 kittens.

post #5 of 39
For the three
post #6 of 39
so so sad BUT be happy for the kitties you guys have saved !!!!!!!!! Most never make it out of the shelter here they are given 3 days and that's it. My hubby did save a flea covered, crusty eyed kitten out of a tree at Walmart the other day ! He's doing great now ! No more crusty eyes, eating well, and no more fleas ! He does however have a touch of diarreah. He's going to kitty rescue tomorrow. I'd love to keep him........

Just keep reminding yourself of the good things that happen with kitties.
post #7 of 39
OMG - I dread going up to the adoption center on weekends to see all the new kittens. I got 3 e-mails in 12 hours about taking on orphaned litters (3 different litters). We pull from kill shelters when we can, but you know they are already putting down the adults cause the kittens are growing up and taking up room.

I hear ya and feel for you Katie!
post #8 of 39
If only people used their brains to spay/neuter.

It's so sad

But a huge pat on the back to everyone who try to find good homes for these babies.
post #9 of 39
Thread Starter 
We had an AMAZING weekend...we placed 11 cats and 4 kittens last weekend....most of them were foster to be adopted..so I hope they all work out. I wish everyone would spay and neuter their cats...I think a lot of people do not realize that we really do not need more kittens....too many adults are euthanized during this time of year. Breaks my heart.

post #10 of 39
Katie you and people like you are doing such a great job. It must be terrible to see all those lovely cats being euthanised. You must be such a strong person. Thank you for caring about them.
post #11 of 39
Thread Starter 
Cilla...I don't consider myself to be brave...I just will NOT allow the negative stuff (and frankly there is way too much of that) deter me from helping as many cats as I possibly can. Some people get burned out because they want to save them all...I want to save them all too..but I'm realistic. I know I can't...but I can save one or more via an adoption event...I can save one or more by volunteering at a feral cat spay/neuter clinic...I can save one or more by helping people via this forum and others to keep their cats and to get them fixed. It's all about perspective.


P.S. You NEVER get used to seeing a cat euthanized....it haunts you.
post #12 of 39
I want to be in on all of this. I want to share in the care of the ferals/strays in whatever modest way I can. So I am going to find out more about all of this here in the UK. I couldn't help in a great way, but I could spare two half days in a week, that would be some help. I find TCS a great inspiration. And I still say you are brave.
post #13 of 39
Thread Starter 
Cilla...that is WONDERFUL!! The feral cat clinic I volunteer with is this weekend...I hope we have over 80 cats this month...we REALLY need to these cats before they get pregnant.

post #14 of 39
Katie, I am well used to handling cats, and some feral, but I don't have any pet nursing qualifications, experience. Will I still be of some use? There must be some things they would glad of me doing????
post #15 of 39
Katie, I sent someone I work with to the local shelter to look for
adoptable kittens as she said her and her male friend were
looking for a second kitten to join a cat her friend rescued from the
streets about 10 months ago. She was shocked on how many kittens
there were. She said they went last week and almost empty. She said
they went again this week and they were full and told her many would
have to be PTS. They were shocked. They had no idea. I told her
many people just don't get their pets neutered or spayed and again
she was shocked and did not understand how people could be so
irresponsible. She said they had no idea. So keep spreading the word.
There are a lot of people out there that just don't know or understand
about the shelter situations. You do good things ! Keep up the good work !
post #16 of 39
Cilla, I've helped at a feral cat clinic (a different one that Katie posts about), with recovery of the cats after surgery. I was just like you at the point when I did that volunteer stint -- and I did just fine. Unless you're organizing a brand new clinic on your own (which I wouldn't advise as a first step!!!), your clinic staff will know where to use your help without putting you or cats in harm's way!

Originally Posted by Prettyboy
She said they went last week and almost empty. She said
they went again this week and they were full and told her many would
have to be PTS. They were shocked. They had no idea.
This is one of those points that saddens me a lot. In my area, I think what happened was that years ago, Animal Control was open and willing to report how many animals they took in and put down. Then, there was a small group that got upset about those deaths, and they kind of painted Animal Control as the SOLE EVIL in the community, for having killed those animals. So Animal Control has ever since run scared from outsiders. To them, ANY inquiry about numbers is a threat that they are once again going to be publicly pilloried.

I also realized that in our area, there are a LOT of organizations other than our local animal control, handling animals. Unfortunately, none of them are currently obligated to tell anyone anything about intake and disposition. So it's virtually impossible to get very good statistics.

Still, it is absolutely true, I think, that most people are not insensitive to the problems of too many cats, they are simply UNAWARE of the problem, because we don't give them the information they need.

post #17 of 39
Hi Linda, I am new here. Just wanted to make sure I was not
misunderstood. The people I sent to the shelter I sent there
because I knew otherwise they would have gone to a pet store
or someplace like that. I told them there are wonderful pets to
be found at the shelter and they should go there. What they
were actually shocked at was that there would be so many people
not getting their pets fixed resulting in such a large amount of
strays at the shelter. They already knew that animals that don't
get adopted from the shelter could be PTS, but they did not
understand the numbers. They thought that was probably a rare
occurance as they thought that there were probably very few
animals at the shelters. They were stunned to see so many and
all because people had not had their pets fixed. They had said
to me... "why wouldn't someone get their dog or cat fixed ??".
I told them for a lot of reasons and then I listed them and then
said that it all came down to people not being responsible.
Anyway, I wanted to make sure that anyone reading this was not
thinking that I was saying anything bad about shelters in general.
I am sure there are good ones and bad ones, like everything in life.
I also wanted to re-emphasize the importance of telling people about
having their pets fixed and about adopting from shelters.... PB
post #18 of 39
Thread Starter 
Cilla...I'm soo sorry..didn't see your question until today. When I work in recovery..it's just watching the cats as they wake up from being under anesthesia and they are all back in their traps. I would say YES....with as much experience as you have..they could certainly use you. I didn't have any vet tech experience..and yet, when they needed me to assist the vets...I was willing to learn.

PB..thanks for your kind words...I understood what you mean and YES, far too many people are unaware of just how bad the overpopulation is...it's one thing to read a number..it's completely different to be faced with a room full of kittens and cats and be faced with making a decision on which ones live and which ones die. That is why although I am not for abortion...I see it as a necessary evil to control the feral cat numbers.

post #19 of 39
This seems to be a really bad time of year. I was at the local cat home (a no-kill shelter) on Thursday, and when I got there, was pleased to hear that there were "only" 26 cats, most of them adoptable. I talked to one of the volunteers yesterday, and she told me that 12 kittens had been admitted since then. The newspaper is full of "free to a good home" ads. It's difficult not to get depressed.
post #20 of 39
I subscribe to a yahoo e-mail group for local Kansas City rescue. In the last 24 hours, I've seen a request for foster help for 15 kittens at a high kill shelter (pull them before they are PTS), another request for assistance for an independent rescuer with 15 kittens acquired from local vets (they were asked to PTS them and gave them to the rescuer), and a story of a feral cat litter of 3 that was located and pulled from their mom and put into a no-kill shelter. In the last week I've seen no less than 6 requests to bottle feed orphaned litters.

These are only the ones we hear about. I'm going to buy a stock of KMR for the feral kittens (they are 3 weeks old, they haven't been able to trap mom in 3 years, and she hides her kittens so they later need to be TNR'd and not able to be socialized), and I built a drop trap and donated it to them to catch the mom.

It's depressing that you can't save them all, but you can help out in small ways.
post #21 of 39
Thread Starter 
Hey Amy....we got in 27 kittens in the last week to our rescue. The craziness is upon us...between now and October I'm going to be wishing more people had spayed their cats. As much as I "love" kittens....it's the cats that suffer every summer. These cats were once cute little kittens but now many of them will be euthanized in shelters. It's heartbreaking.

post #22 of 39
The discussions in the Yahoo group about required speutering before adoption are interesting. Most rescue groups refuse to adopt without a speuter, but there are still groups out there that only have the adopter sign a promise to do it with no follow up that it is actually done. These are contributing to the kittens of the world and debate is always hot around this topic.

I'm going to knock on wood, but I am kittenless this year - first in 10 years. Just goes to show you that TNRing anything that wanders my way works!! The h*ll with the vet bills!

Spay/neuter: IT SAVES LIVES!!!
post #23 of 39
Thread Starter 
Since I can't TNR...I give money to offset the costs for a group that DOES TNR in Virginia. I do hope all we do will help.

CONGRATS on being kittenless...I really look up to you.

post #24 of 39
When I adopted Miura earlier today...from a No Kill Shelter...I couldnt help but think about all of the other places...full of adorable little lives, just like the ones I had spent time with...just like the little one I brought home - makes you reallly want to bring them all home with you.
post #25 of 39
Thread Starter 
VWVixen..actually, I don't want to take them all home...I am a realist and more than 2 cats in the condo would be too much. That is why I volunteer...I can help to find good responsible homes for the cats/kittens so that we can rescue more and find more good homes.

I HIGHLY recommend volunteering!!

post #26 of 39
I was back at the "cat home" today - 22 more kittens have been taken in since last Saturday (yikes!; seven little "Garfields" are from one litter), and the place is bursting at the seams. The kittens will probably find homes, but some of the older cats, many of whom have been there for 3 or 4 years, won't. There's no money for shots, neutering, or emergencies. My husband (an expert shopper) picked up 160 lbs. of litter he saw on sale yesterday - they probably won't get through the month with that. We live in a small town of under 10,000 people - if the situation is so bad here, what's it like in cities with 10 million inhabitants?(,kmlmkn, JC just typed that!)
post #27 of 39
Jcat...Holy Toledo...22 kittens since Saturday!

Oh, how I wish we could get more people to spay & neuter their cats!
post #28 of 39
Katie, you are truly a dream volunteer. You see that while you may not be able to trap or adopt more cats personally, there are lots of roles to be filled that still help a lot! Hugs to you!!

I have to share a little bit of nice news, especially 'cause I know Katie particularly enjoys good news. We had a call come in a week ago or so, someone didn't leave their name, but asked that we contact a person who had placed a "free-to-good-home" ad in a local paper. She said that she contacts such advertisers and tells them about low-cost spay/neuter resources and groups like mine and so on. I couldn't resist -- I researched the phone number, cold-called and explained that someone there voluntarily did these calls, and that I wanted to let her know that we appreciate it. Her husband answered; he said good-humoredly, "I've been putting up with this for 20 years now, that's my wife."

Imagine: this is one individual, who is doing something, completely on her own, and helping people she doesn't know, and mostly, I suspect, she's been doing it with absolutely no recognition or credit being given. AWESOME, isn't it? Gives me shivers.

Linda -- and yes, I DO wish that every call were THAT sort of news.
post #29 of 39
Thread Starter 
Hey Linda....that's wonderful. I've thought about doing that...answering free to a good home ads and taking the kittens to be vetted. What I currently do is simply tell them that they really should charge a small fee and give them other places they can post. Linda..if it helps you...here is my rehome page:


post #30 of 39
Thanks Katie! (You and I must be on the same crazy schedule this week -- GET YOUR REST GIRL, we want you fresh and energetic at the clinic!!!!!)

A lady named Kat Chaplin turned me on to how to answer free-to-good-home ads. I've printed her (Neuteress of the Night!) article on how to do it kindly and well -- I'll see if I can find a link to share. Tne Neuteress isn't afraid to use lots of humor and yet she's very savvy about how often people who place those ads, are truly trying to be good samaritans. If you've never worked with a rescue or shelter, and you find a kitten in your yard, in many places, it's very hard to figure out what you ought to do. I've done those calls a few times, though mostly I haven't had the time to get into the proper calm frame of mind. I used to try to harvest the ad information and still keep a spreadsheet with the info running, it just gets these huge gaps in it where I don't get to read the ads for months and months (or maybe now, even a year).

HERE's the link from the Neuteress herself (drum roll please!):

How to Address Free To A Good Home Ads in Your Community

Please give it a try!
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