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Help Make a Dent in Kitten Season

March 29, 1994

Here we are, almost knee-deep in another kitten season. More than half the calls we get at Adopt A Pet (a canine rescue group) are cat-related during the kitten season. Why don't people realize there is a simple solution to the problem?

Who does it hurt when you don't spray or neuter your cat? Me! It hurts me when, after the 40th call of the day, trying to give the best advice I can to people who have unwanted kittens, I answer the phone to someone who angrily accuses me of not caring, wanting to know what I think I'm being paid for (I'm a volunteer).

Who does it hurt? Neighbors who find litters of kittens deposited on their front doorstep or abandoned under their house and are now forced to make a decision that the irresponsible owner couldn't make. Since there are 45 cats born for each person in the United States, there are not enough homes available. So this kind soul has sleepless nights, while the irresponsible owner sleeps peacefully in the erroneous belief that the kittens will have found good homes.

Who does it hurt? The public pocketbook. For every 11 cats that get into the pound, only one makes it out alive. An estimated $35 is spent to handle each animal in the pound, including overhead, housing, feeding and lethal injection. By taking advantage of spay/neuter assistance, your cat's surgery can cost half that price. Since Ventura County animal control euthanized an estimated 5,356 cats last year, this means $187,460 was spent just to kill cats. Is this acceptable to you?

Who does it hurt the most? The 3-day-old kitten who dies slowly of starvation under a bush. The cats that become coyote food in our hillsides. The cats given away in front of supermarkets to "good homes" but are abandoned shortly after. The cats that suffer for hours after being hit by cars.

Please save this letter and show it to a neighbor or friend who is harboring an unaltered cat. Help make a difference before the next kitten season arrives.

LINDA BOWRING

Simi Valley

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