Homeless, outdoor cats are suffering throughout British Columbia, which is why the BC SPCA is grateful for recent funding from PetSmart Charities of Canada®. These funds will contribute to an ongoing trap-neuter-return (TNR) project in Haida Gwaii. Addressing the province’s cat overpopulation crisis is a major focus of the BC SPCA’s new, five-year Strategic Plan (PDF), so the funds couldn’t come at a better time.
“Abandoned and free-roaming cats are forced to fend for themselves outdoors, suffering from starvation, illness, injury, freezing temperatures in the winter and predator attacks,” says Amy Morris, policy and outreach officer, BC SPCA, noting that 75 per cent of kittens born outdoors die before the age of six months. Those who survive live approximately two years and, during their short lives, they produce litters of kittens who face the same tragic fate. “That’s why it’s so important to spay or neuter your pets before they’re six months, and never abandon kittens or cats,” Morris says.
The trap-neuter-return program allows the current cats to maintain the colony space, preventing new cats from moving in. Outdoor cats who are neutered live longer and healthier lives and eventually, the colony will diminish and the only cats around will be those with loving homes, Morris says.
The BC SPCA is dedicated to promoting the health and welfare of cats and all animals, and the non-profit organization is hoping every community in B.C. will work with its dedicated staff and volunteers over the next five years to be part of the solution.
In Haida Gwaii, the recent $6,050 PetSmart Charities of Canada® will help with an ongoing TNR program that specifically targets the community’s homeless cat population, just one of the many initiatives the BC SPCA continues to undertake each year to help address B.C.’s homeless pet problem, as well as education, cruelty prevention and advocacy efforts.
The British Columbia Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is a not-for-profit organization reliant on public donations. Our mission is to protect and enhance the quality of life for domestic, farm and wild animals in B.C.