A newly formed group in La Scie says they hope to tackle a growing problem in that community, and other communities on the Baie Verte Peninsula: stay cats.
Holly Evans and Krista Andrews have started up a chapter of Scaredy Cat Rescue, a spin-off of the Corner Brook organization of the same name.
According to its web site, Scaredy Cat “helps feral and abandoned cats in our community.” Feral cats mean those cats that were born outside, away from human contact. Scaredy Cat goes on to say, “We foster and adopt these “community” cats into loving, forever homes. To date we have rescued over 300 cats in our community and surrounding areas.”
Now, Evans and Andrews have decided to bring the efforts of the Corner Brook group in this region, and hopefully deal with the problem that exists in many of the communities on the Baie Verte Peninsula.
“It started when Krista rescued a cat, and discovered it was sick, and had really bad eyes,” says Evans. “She sent it to Corner Brook to Scaredy Cat, where he got medical care, and now he’s adopted by a loving family.”
From there, the idea came that more needed to be done to help the growing stray and feral cat population in this area. Evans soon connected with Andrews, and together they set out to help in any way they could.
“We started to fundraise to help with the campaign of Trap-Neuter-Return,” she explains. “We just finished a silent auction and we’ve got more things planned for the next couple of months.”
The idea of Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) is something Scaredy Cat is trying to educate the general public about, as something that has benefits when it comes to dealing with a large stray and feral cat population.
“Right now, we have a colony of many 15-20 cats that we’re keeping an eye on in La Scie,” explained Evans. “Those cats are breeding, and that colony is expanding rapidly – so something has to be done to help the situation.”
The proposed course of action is TNR – to trap the cats, spay or neuter them, and then release them back into the colony, explains Evans. Such action would mean the colony wouldn’t have a means of growing any larger, and thus hopefully containing the stay and feral population.
Evans says the TNR way of doing things is a good plan, as SPCA’s in Corner Brook and Grand Falls-Windsor are already filled to capacity and are unable to handle the level of need in its outlying areas as well.
“The SPCA’s are already swamped with stuff in their own towns,” she said. “We can’t always rely on them to help with this issue.”
So what now?
Evans and Andrews will be looking for help from other volunteers and supporters to help in the cause as well. Fundraisers to help with the costs of spaying and neutering the trapped cats will be ongoing. In addition to that, homes will be needed for cats that are part of the TNR process.
“We’ll be looking for foster homes for the cats, and if we have kittens then we’ll be looking for adoption families as well,” she said.
As for the future, the ladies hope that their efforts will expand to include not only La Scie, but also Baie Verte and other areas they’re aware of similar colonies and stray cat problems.
To assist in the efforts, you can contact the group through Facebook by searching La Scie Scaredy Cat Rescue or emailing email@example.com