CatSpan in need of food for cats

One-time-only appeal launched to support feral cat colonies

Feral cat colonies gradually die out if its members are spayed and neutered.

Feral cat colonies gradually die out if its members are spayed and neutered.

Feral cats in District 69 get hungry, just like everyone else, and Mary Linn is hoping the community will pitch in to feed them.

The director of CatSpan said her group is in desperate need of cat food to feed the over 200 feral cats in 20 local colonies. She said the Parksville Pharmasave has offered to act as a one-time drop off centre for donations for this first-ever food drive event.

Linn said she’s hoping for a strong response from cat lovers across the area.

“CatSpan neutered 146 feral cats last year, about 50 more than the year before,” Linn said, noting the group’s colonies cost $8,000 per year to feed. “This is why we urgently need the public’s help to supply some of the cat food we need, as we have had to stop neutering cats so we can continue to feed the cats we are currently looking after.”

She noted that feral cats seek food and shelter near human-generated food sources, usually garbage, if nothing else is available.

Un-neutered, they breed prolifically.

“Removing them from the area they live in creates what is known as a vacuum effect, because what draws them to a particular place is food and shelter; unless the food source and shelter are completely eliminated new cats will move in.”

Killing these cats, or moving them will not solve the problem, she stressed. Farms, for example, will always have a food source for cats.

Because CatSpan neuters, feeds, and monitors any new cats arriving at their established colonies, they are able to maintain the status quo in each colony. The colony will gradually die out, usually over a period of seven years. Neutering and feeding cats is the humane way to control feral colonies.

CatSpan is grateful to get dry and canned cat food. Just drop off your purchased cat food to the great folks at Pharmasave during the next week. Anyone preferring to send a tax deductible donation instead can send it to: CatSpan, Box 64 Nanoose Bay V9P 9J9 or for more information please call Mary Linn at 250-468-7904.