Letters to the Editor

Catspan needs food & donations

Catspan is still urgently in need of cat food. The charity’s funds need to go towards paying for vet bills as the group is still in the process of trapping and neutering cats on two local farms and has neutered nearly twice as many feral cats in 2013 than it did in 2012.

Feral cat colony stability is maintained, in part through neutering as well as by feeding just enough food for the colony. Should a new cat appear, without a tipped ear, which indicates that he has already been neutered, he/she is trapped and neutered and returned to the colony. The cats eventually die, having been as humanely treated as possible, and without having given birth to more kittens. The first colony of over 50 cats neutered by Catspan over 20 years ago died out in 2008 when the last colony cat, Heba, died at the age of 19, which is highly unusual — neutered feral cats usually survive about seven years.

The average cost to Catspan to neuter, treat (for parasites and injuries) and vaccinate a feral cat is $180. Unlike shelters and rescues that get adoption fees to cover part of their costs, none of the money Catspan spends is recoverable through adoption fees as these cats are not human-friendly and therefore not adoptable.

Two hundred cats eat a lot of food in the cold weather, so if you can help, dry and canned cat food can be bought at, and donated at, local pet stores. Cat food bought elsewhere can be dropped off at Leading Ledgers #119-425 East Stanford, Parksville (9.:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday to Friday). Money is welcome too; it’s tax deductible and donations can be made on line through CanadaHelps.org or mailed to Catspan Box PO Box 64, Nanoose Bay, B.C. V9P 9J9.

Find more information at www.catspanferals.com.

Jennifer Coleman

Parksville

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