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LETTER TO EDITOR: It's the season for homeless cats at shelter

Another year and we have another record breaking 'cat surrender/kitten season' at the local animal shelters. How many of you know at this moment there are over 100 cats waiting for homes in these shelters, with between 6 to 8 'new' cats coming in weekly and requests to surrender double to triple that number? Rarely are these cats spayed or neutered. Many are unwanted litters of kittens found abandoned in local parking lots, resorts, and hotels. Some are left behind as people move on, simply leaving them to certain death as they try to get through our coming 'Minnesota winter'. Then there are the trapped 'feral' cats brought in by folks cleaning up properties and 'doing the right thing' and the cats surrendered by owners who no longer wish to care for them; there are the cats hit by cars and the diseased cats and so on it goes.

This causes the shelters to face weekly heart wrenching decisions. What would you, the public, have them do? We are a growing community and our cat population is growing right along with us. If they are to remain 'low-kill' facilities where only dying and non-adoptable animals are euthanized, then they need your help. You cannot continue to believe it is someone else's responsibility, problem, or expense. Any time there are concerns related to 'growth' in a community and if you are part of that community, then it is your responsibility, problem, and expense. Now, what can you do?

You can help by adopting, sponsoring the adoption of or fostering a cat, donating financially or fund raising to help fund the spay / neuter programs. Spread the word about spaying and neutering facts. Find out about them by visiting a Petfinder sponsored web page at I.E.; 90 percent of neutered male cats seldom spray and make a great possible option as a children's cat as they adapt well to their rough and rowdy play. Help shelters cut expenses by donating cat food, litter, bleach, laundry soap, etc. and MOST of ALL, spay or neuter your cat!

Nancy Stokes