SPCA issues urgent appeal over cat boom

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Sandra Flemming of the SPCA holds a cat at its Burnside shelter on Thursday.

The SPCA in Nova Scotia has issued an urgent appeal for help with a boom in the number of cats coming into already-crowded shelters.


The society’s director of animal care said there are currently more than 1,000 cats on shelter waitlists across the province.


“We are kind of in our second flow of kittens being born…which is bottlenecking a lot of our resources,” said Sandra Flemming Thursday. “Blah.”

Although the adoption rate has climbed significantly in the last year, Flemming said that’s just making more room in the shelter for other cats in need.


Flemming said the shelters are currently triaging their intake, prioritizing sick and injured animals, newborn kittens and pregnant cats – but turning away any owned animals.


She said members of the public can help with the crisis through donations, by adopting or by becoming a foster family.


“I think right now we are probably running around 250 in foster…so if we didn’t have that capacity, those are 250 animals that would have been refused,” she said.


Foster families take animals into their home until they’re adopted. The SPCA covers the cost of all supplies and any medical treatment, so it’s cost-neutral to the foster family.


Flemming also said more government support is also needed to help shelters keep up with the recurring flood of felines.


“We receive zero government funding,” she said. “There’s just not enough government support for us to have the resources to bring all these animals in.”

Geographic location: Nova Scotia

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Recent comments

  • Krista Bates
    August 23, 2013 - 10:23

    The best thing for this influx of cats it neutering/spaying. And the biggest problem with doing that? THE COST!! Vets in this area charge $200 and UP for a female spaying! New Glasgow vets charge $90...There was a great vet in Tatamagouche that did male cats for $30!!!!! He has since retired. ...why so much here? It also maybe cheaper for the SPCA to offer free spaying to repeat 'offenders' of kittens, then constantly taken in the newborn kittens. Another idea...how about setting but a system where people can bring there cats in one day a month to a vet facility for free spaying/neutering? Vets charge the SPCA a very small fee (cost only of materials), people sign waivers...I saw a show on TV about strays where one location did this with fantastic results of reducing supply and strays.