Need some music!
Last evening and early this morning my wife and I saw several cats we’ve never seen before cutting through our side yard. One is all black, another all black with white paws, a third all black with a white patch on its chest and a fourth one that was gray and black - like a gray angora. I hope a family of feral cats hasn’t moved into the neighborhood. That would put a damper on the almost constant flow of breakfast, brunch, lunch, mid-afternoon, dinner and evening “clients” at the bird feeders.
In your area are you allowed to live trap the cats and then call the Animal Control to pick up?
The human society and the shelters are currently over-run with cats. They’ve been trying for years to get people to adopt them. Sadly, more cats arrive than get adopted. As for the feral cats, they run from people. A few people here have tried to coax them into coming to them - even with food offerings, but to no avail. One woman tried to coax some feral kittens to come to her and they just ran off and hid. There is an used garage on the other side of the house next door to me with a field behind it. For many years, under this garage (it’s built over a steep embankment) has been home to skunks, ground hogs (wood chucks) and cats - though I don’t think at the same time! The woman said the kittens ran under the back side of the garage. They’re either between the floor and the sub floor or using a den dug out by the ground hogs and/or skunks. In our town many years ago, the animal control officer would come with live traps, capture the cats and bring them to a rescue shelter. But eventually, due to budget cuts and policy changes, that practice ended. Now animal control only comes out for reports of possible rabid animals. The town also changed it from a full-time position to a part-time one. Now, most of the time when there’s a call for a possible rabid animal, either the local police or a NY State Encon Officer (Environmental Conservation) or Ranger will come to check it out. If it is acting as though it is rabid, it is shot on the spot.
Years ago I gave a hunter safely course to a guy who ended up becoming an Encon Officer. He happened to be the responding to a report (mine) of a rabid raccoon walking around people’s front yard… and even up onto their porches. By the time he arrived, I had placed a large cardboard box over it while it lay on a neighbor’s front lawn and seemed to be taking a nap. When the officer arrived he got out a live trap and we did get it inside. But the poor thing was foaming at the mouth, hissing and growling at us and could barely stand up. He retrieved a .223 caliber rifle from the trunk of his car and shot the raccoon. He took it to the NYS Wildlife Reserve here in this county and it did test positive for rabies. That was a long time ago. But back to the present… I would have to make several phone calls to various government offices and to the animal shelters to see if they are even accepting new cats. But for now, they seem to be quite healthy and appear to be well fed.
We actually have the SPCA, the Animal Control, and there are two sets of Cat Rescue that specifically deal with the “overflow from the other two” and they also deal with “feral cats”.
Anything like the skunk…goes to the University as we have the Western Canadian College of Veterinarian Medicine on campus. (For the East …it is in Guelph, Ontario). They do all the testing for rabies, etc. They also do the testing on deer etc for Chronic Wasting disease.
I’m sure there are several more around here. It’s just that I’m not too familiar with them anymore. About 30 years ago we had a whole list of places/people to call for nearly every kind of animal. There was one guy who even came down to our son’s house about 10 years ago to collect several baby bunnies from a makeshift nest under the pool deck. One of the dogs had been digging under there and when he came in he vomited a baby rabbit on the kitchen floor. Once we cleaned up the mess my wife and went out and checked out where the dog had been digging. Apparently the mother rabbit had moved her babies and had just a shallow hole dug which she lined with her hair and dead leaves. After she placed the babies in there she covered the opening with leaves. We watched and waited until the next to see if she was coming back to feed them. Nope! So we called this guy who takes in rabbits and he came down and got them. He said he’d have to bottle feed them - they were that young. Later that summer we saw him in the grocery store and he said of the five he got, four made it. He did tells us it was very hard to keep such little ones alive at the tender age we found them. Dinky little things they were.
The Humane Society of the United States estimates the following:
- Number of brick-and-mortar animal shelters in the US: 3,500
- Number of rescue groups and animal sanctuaries in North America: 10,000
- Number of cats and dogs entering shelters each year: 6-8 million (down from 13 million in 1973)
- Of the 3 million cats and dogs euthanized in shelters each year, approximately 2.4 million (80%) are healthy and treatable and could have been adopted into new homes
- Number cats and dogs adopted from shelters each year: 4 million
- Percentage of cats euthanized in shelters: 70%
- Percentage of total shelter intake comprised of cats: Approximately 50% (in some regions, 2/3 of a shelter’s population is cats)
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals offers the following statistics:
- Approximately 7.6 million companion animals enter animal shelters nationwide every year. Of those, approximately 3.4 million are cats.
- Each year, approximately 2.7 million animals are euthanized (1.4 million cats).
- Approximately 2.7 million shelter animals are adopted each year (1.3 million cats).
- About 649,000 animals who enter shelters as strays are returned to their owners. Of those, only 100,000 are cats.
- Of the cats entering shelters, approximately 37% are adopted, 41% are euthanized, and less than 5% of cats who came in as strays are returned to their owners.
Everyone knows that rabbits are prolific breeders. Did you know that cats are almost as prolific? A female cat can become pregnant at 5 months and can have several litters in one year. With each litter averaging 4 to 6 kittens per litter, that amounts to 12 to 18 kittens. That’s a lot of babies in one year! Unfortunately, all of this breeding is one of the main factors contributing to the overpopulation problem.
One breeding female can mother around 180 kittens in her lifetime.
One unfixed male can breed with multiple females in each breeding season. No one know how many times 1 male becomes a daddy in his lifetime, but let’s say in his really luckiest season, he breeds with 5 females. 12-18 x 5. Let’s say the stat of 180 kitties for mommy is the norm, and that male mated with 5 females who all averaged 180 kitties in a lifetime, so that’s 5x180 = 900 daddy offspring. And 5 very vitamin depleted, very tired mommies1
Every feral litter can also begin breeding at 5 months. Let’s say mommy has a conservative 4 in a litter. For ease, let’s say 2 boys both hitting on their 2 sisters (double the chance one of them will be a daddy). So both sisters get pregnant— having 4 each. And one son even got his momma pregnant, so another 4… That’s 12 kitties. Mind you, the daddies went to the feral colony down the street, so there’s 12 more from another 2 females! 24 kittens from 2 males who are only 5 months old…
At least they don’t eat their offspring like what happens at times with rabbits.
And speaking of cats… big cats… if a lion has has family and gets into a territorial dispute with another lion and loses, he is driven off. Then the victorious lion will eat the offspring of the defeated lion and then impregnate the lioness… thus assuring his progeny will survive. And the lioness will lie there and watch this happening. Talk about a winner take all.
Ewww, remember this is the cc lounge!
But, some cats do kill kittens, especially Toms who want mommas to turn back into Ladies of the Night. I remember a very bad incident when I was a child… The little ones were all victims of cat-infanticide. The mother ran off with the murderer… I cried for days…
Here you go, Cagey! I clicked on new tab (Firefox) and when it comes up it also shows the most recent “favorite” websites as well as “highlights” of the last several webpages I was on. Low and behold was the Weather Reporting thread on the forum, but look what was used as a graphic! Meow!
I’m tired just looking at the pictures!!
The credit reminded me of someone I knew from years ago. His last name was “Lovely” and he had an uncle whose last name was “Sweet”. I wonder if anyone ever made corny jokes about them on Valentine’s Day.
You should be asking how often!
You know what’s odd? I didn’t meet them in a candy store, but in a bar (tavern). The two of them always went out drinking together every weekend… and then some. One night when Lovely staggered out of the bar after being cut off for a little too much libation, he walked home. Although it was a state highway, it had this one section that had a very tight turn with a rock outcrop that was quite high. It was literally a “blind curve.” Paul walked halfway around the curve, then fell over and went right to sleep in the middle of the road. A short time later a truck pulling a manure wagon came around the curve and ran over him. I guess it was just the empty manure wagon that went over him. He only had a few bruises and some sore ribs and muscle, but he never said if he smelled like sh&t. A couple of days later he got drunk and fell at his own home, falling over the porch banister and broke his leg in two places. What a “lovely” time he had that week. (pun intended)