Cat shelters see steep increase in kittens this year

Connor McLaughlin, Special to Seaway News
Cat shelters see steep increase in kittens this year
File photo.

CORNWALL, Ontario – As fall begins the birth rate of stray kittens is on the rise.

In an interview with Seaway News, Anna Carriere, of the Calico House Cat Rescue and a very passionate member of the animal community, explained that she was seeing an increase in the number of feral cats at an extremely rapid rate.

The feral cat problem has grown over the past several years. In 2017, a petition was signed by citizens and given to the City of Cornwall, asking that the situation be addressed.

In that same year, over 30 per cent of the provincial feral cats taken in by the OSPCA, were from the Stormont, Dundas, and Glengarry animal center. Carriere stated that this year in particular, has had the local cat rescues overwhelmed by the extreme number of kittens being born, saying that it has most likely been due to the warm weather.

“I get messages every day about feral cats, at least four of them,” Carriere said. “I think they (the OSPCA) are doing everything they can with the resources that they have.”

“Unfortunately, they are receiving very little support from major City officials, the public not helping, with people who don’t spay and neuter, people that dump cats, they are in a boat that is sinking, with a bucket to get rid of the water.”

June 8, 2020, the Cornwall City Council reviewed the Cat Control Strategy, a by-law that sets out to help with the growing feral cat problem.

Carriere talked about how she must pick up deceased cats from the road. She said that the City does not act until the cat has decomposed to such a state that it becomes bloated and difficult to remove from the road.

She went on to talk about how she rescued a four-month-old kitten who was in a collision with a passing vehicle. The injury was grave and the only option was for the kitten to be humanely euthanized.

Carriere wishes that more people would spay and neuter their cats, so that these situations of stray cats being injured or killed stops.

“If this weren’t cats, if it were dogs, I would feel the same way, if it weren’t dogs and it were birds, I would feel the same way,” said Carriere.

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