Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Summer Solstice Cat Update

As summer officially begins, we are nearing (we hope) the end of kitten season, so the trappers (like me) have a tiny bit of breathing room in our lives for a change. So I can now write a bit about what's going on with the Venice Cat Coalition-Key West Cat Society.

I have to say -- We are growing! Much more than I would have imagined in our first "active" year. The non-profit was registered in 2006 but we did not collect $ or organize much until last fall. The IRS gave us our official recognition just a few months ago.

Our progress is measurable! In the last 45 days or so, our group has taken upwards of 80 cats or kittens to spay-neuter surgery, either via the free clinics, or using our own funds or donated vouchers. This is great news, and put a big dent in the waiting list of 100 cats plus needing to be TNR'd about 2 months ago.

We also have been doing adoptions as a steady pace, despite the economy and the other blues that many people are singing. I am still adding up the numbers but we have done at least a dozen adoptions in the last month or so. Not bad for a nonprofit that has no facility or shelter: just volunteer homes!

And we continue our practice of working with the "end of the road" cats, taking in and placing even the bad luck cats that the other rescue groups have rejected or condemned to die for some reason. We will tell more of their stories soon, but they have included a blind kitten, a broken-legged kitten, a male tom that was badly mauled by an animal and mangy, a declawed cat that was declared "vicious" and "unadoptable" by another group, another badly mauled six-toed cat, and at least one cat that tested positive for a blood disease but appears to be in perfect health.

So all is well here. You can help by volunteering or sending in a financial donations. Helping so many cats does cost money, and we regularly buy medicines, flea treatments, food, litter and other supplies, in addition to paying for the vet bills. Mary Riley is becoming our volunteer coordinator and she has a nice list of jobs that could be done by willing helpers.

With the slight slow-down in kittens and trapping now that we are in the heat of the season, we are going to turn some of our attention to education and community awareness, and building more community partnerships -- all to help the cats, all cats, not just the "fluffies" but the ones out on the streets who have no one to speak for them (except you and me!).

Thanks to all who have helped this season, and all the best of Bast to you!


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