What do you do with 244 cats?
by The Press and Standard | August 9, 2019 5:00 pm
Last Updated: August 7, 2019 at 1:19 pm
What does one do with 244 cats?
That’s a question the Colleton County Animal Shelter had to answer in July. With 164 cats already in their cages, owners wanted to surrender another 80 kittens. It was overwhelming. And it’s a problem that occurs every year.
The solution, however, has to come from the community. The shelter can only take care of a limited number of animals — when all the cages and pens are full, they simply cannot afford to take care of any additional animals.
Many people feed outdoor cats, but become overwhelmed once they start to reproduce. Community (wild) cats can have two litters per year, producing 12 kittens their first year and 2,201 by year four — and that’s assuming only 2.8 kittens survive from each litter.
And there are simply not enough homes available for that many cats.
But the community can help by using the spay and neuter programs sponsored by FoCCAS, both for pets and outdoor “community” cats.
• FoCCAS has a partnership with Hilton Head Humane Association in Okatie. Residents can call 843-645-8500. Pets have to be dropped off and picked up in Okatie. Leave a message that you are a resident of Colleton County, your name and phone number and SNAC will call you back. The cost for dogs is $30 (female) and $20 (male); for cats $25 (female) and $15 (male); and $10 for community cats brought in a cat trap.
• FoCCAS has a partnership with Charleston Animal Society for community cats only. The cost is $10 to the participant. Drop off for cats in a trap must be before 10 a.m. and they must be picked up later that afternoon.
• FoCCAS offers $25 off spay/neuter surgery at local vets, including DeLoach Animal Hospital, Hampton Animal Hospital, Morrison Vet Clinic, and Walterboro Animal Hospital. These vouchers are available at Colleton County Animal Services.
• Cat traps, purchased for the public by FoCCAS, may be borrowed from Colleton County Animal Service at no charge, but ID is required.
These organizations can also give rabies and distemper vaccines to prevent the spread of these diseases. Community cats who have been fixed usually have a snip from their ear. If you see a tipped ear, that cat has been spayed or neutered.
Community cats, when neutered, can play a positive role in their environment. Generally healthy, they are a deterrent to rodents and snakes and when fixed and returned to their territory, will keep additional cats out of their area.
OTHER WAYS TO HELP
• CCAS is always looking for fosters. Kittens are not fixed until they weigh two pounds. When many kittens come into the shelter, they are still small. Fostering allows the kittens to grow and learn to socialize before their surgery and adoption
• Adopt! Colleton County Animal Shelter (CCAS) is open for adoptions Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 11 a.m.–4 p.m. and Saturdays 11 a.m.–3 p.m.
• Adopt at an event. CCAS will hold another Cat-A-Thon at Tractor Supply Company in Walterboro on Saturday Aug. 24 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Adoption events are regularly held at area businesses. Attend one and find a friend.
• CCAS kittens and cats can be adopted for $70. Animals adopted from the shelter have been fixed, are up-to-date on shots, and are microchipped.
Call CCAS at 843-893-2651 for information on ways you can make a difference.