Thursday, July 18, 2024
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Saving kittens not sustainable

Vet staff taking home abandoned kittens to save them should be applauded, but it is never going to work long term.
What is needed, as always, is more personal responsibility with our animals, and making sure that all pets are desexed.
A story in yesterday’s Times-Age shows that veterinary staff are struggling with an influx of abandoned kittens, and have taken to fostering the animals in their own homes, rather than seeing them killed.
Staff around Wairarapa say the closure of the SPCA animal shelter in Masterton and the Q’s Zoo means more people are bringing in abandoned kittens.
Some people are even threatening to “get rid” of the animals if staff refuse to take them.
Very few people would want to see healthy kittens killed.
But no one wants hordes of strays roaming the countryside killing native birds either.
While it would be good to still have an SPCA in Wairarapa, that isn’t going to happen any time soon.
So the next best thing is for everyone to do the right thing by making sure all cats and dogs are desexed.
That should be an absolute minimum.
Granted there is already a large stray and wild cat population in Wairarapa.
If people find abandoned kittens from these cats then they are doing the right thing by making sure they are well cared for.
But when people choose not to neuter their animals then dump them on our vets, then that is not okay.
When you choose to care for an animal, you take on the responsibility of making sure they are not a nuisance for others.
That goes for the animals’ offspring as well.
The SPCA and others have been trying to get this message across to pet owners for years, but it obviously isn’t working.
As Amy Hall of South Wairarapa Veterinary Services in Featherston said: more cats are ending up on their doorstep.
“It is really common, and more common now that we don’t have anywhere to refer them to. Our only port of call for help for rehoming is in Kaitoke or the SPCA in Wellington and we find that most people won’t drive that far.”
Let’s not make our pets other people’s problems.

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