Every spring we experience what our friends in the animal rescue community call "kitten season." It is one of the most dreaded times of the year. As the name implies, this is the season that kittens are being born at a rate that is unmanageable by all accounts.
How Many Kittens Are We Talking About?
A female cat can become pregnant as early as four to five months of age. From there, the female cat can have multiple litters in a year's time, often with as many as four to six kittens, sometimes more, in each litter. You do not have to be a math wiz to see the problem here. A single female cat has the potential to birth dozens of other cats just in a single year.
Too Many Kittens Can Force Tough Decisions
With those kinds of numbers, it is easy to see how our local animal rescue facilities could become inundated and overrun with kittens. Despite the very (and I do me very) best efforts of the volunteers and staff in our local rescue community, this can and often does, result in tough decisions being made, and it sucks. It sucks for the animals. It sucks for the volunteers who work so hard to save every life.
Good News: You Can Help
I know that is a harsh reality and one you may not want to hear about but the animal rescue community needs you to hear it because you can help. You can make a difference, even if you don't have any cats of your own.
Spay or Neuter Your Cats
Now, if you do have cats, I expect that you already have had them spayed or neutered. If not, here is your friendly reminder that part of being a responsible pet owner means altering your pets to prohibit unwanted litters. If you need help with the expense, there are low-cost clinics offered regularly, including one that is coming to Evansville in February - but we'll get to that in a minute.
Spay or Neuter Your Community's Cats
If you personally do not have any cats as pets, when is the last time you looked in your backyard or checked your shrubs? There is a good chance that you have some unaltered neighborhood cats running around and while they may not be your personal pets, you can help them, and the rescue community, by having them spayed or neutered... and again, there are low-cost options to do it!
Traveling Services Are Coming to Evansville
Public Veterarany Service, a traveling vet service, will be making its way to Evansville on February 11th and 12th for two spay and neuter clinics. They will also be available to provide other services as well for an additional charge, including deworming, microchipping, nail trims, rabies vaccines, and more.
How Much Does It Cost?
The cost to have a cat spayed or neutered at the clinic is $90 paid by cash or money order only and does include a medical exam as well as all surgical costs, any essential services required by the surgeon, and post-surgery phone access to the veterinary surgeon for three days after the surgery.
How Do I Pre-Register for the Clinic?
You can sign up for the Public Veterinary Services clinic by selecting the day that would work best for you below.
How Do I Learn More?
There are additional guidelines regarding pre-surgery preparations for your animal, post-surgery care, and how the animals should be transported to the clinic. In the event that you have a feral cat that needs to be spayed or neutered, it will need to be brought to the clinic in a live trap and verified to be feral before it will qualify for any subsidized fees. To learn more visit the Public Vet website.
TNR: What Is It And Does It Work?
To learn more about how trapping, spaying or neutering, and releasing feral cats, often called TNR or Trap, Neuter Release, can help reduce the overall community cat population and ultimately the strain on our local animal rescue community, visit our friends at Feline Fix on Facebook. Keep scrolling to have all of your cat questions answered!