Purr-fect cats get new homes
Hackney has been recognised as the only local authority in the country that looks after stray cats.
The council won an RSPCA ‘Innovator’ award for its pioneering work to protect abandoned moggies. A dedicated volunteer Cat Protection Officer works with charities to rescue and nurse abandoned pets back to health. Over 40 strays have been rescued and re-homed in the past year.
Success stories include a cat which was found with her litter under a bush on Hackney Marshes. A volunteer fostered the cat, now named Ruby, and her kittens. They have now all been successfully re-homed.
A tiny male kitten, called Bear, was found with his sister, mother and father in a garden in Clapton. They were also rescued and put into foster homes. Within a few weeks it became clear that he was not developing properly and subsequent veterinary tests showed him to be suffering from hypothyroidism, which is very rare in cats. He is now still under care, along with his mum, and is on daily medication. Had the family not been rescued, this kitten would certainly have not survived. Instead he has grown into a healthy six month old kitten.
There are a large number of stray and feral cats in the borough, including pregnant mums and cats with kittens, all in need of protection and care. My message to anyone thinking of getting a cat, or buying one as a present, is to make sure they can look after it properly. It’s important that they are microchipped so that if any cats do end up in our hands they can be quickly reunited with their owners.
The council is reminding all cat owners to make sure their cats are neutered and health-checked each year by a vet. Residents who receive benefits can take their pets to a free Blue Cross mobile vet outside Hackney Town Hall every Wednesday.
For more info on providing a foster home for cats or helping in any other way visit Cats Protection.