This is my article published in the Reader Newspaper yesterday. It talks about why I believe there are less stray cats around so far this year and how the work of ALStrays has comtributed to this.
Since I wrote it the transport situation is looking better, which is good news.
Last week I mentioned the changes at the dog protectora, and how for now this has meant that we have no transport to get our more tame strays, and abandoned cats, to new homes in Germany. Fortunately for me, we are not currently overrun with cats compared to last year and I have been mulling over why.
I think this is for 2 main reasons: the recession working its way through, and in some ways more importantly, our achievements with AlStrays to date.
In January of last year the first of 3 tame litters of 6 week old kittens was left on the rocks where stray cats have always been fed here. The weather like now was foul, and all 5 were soaked and coughing, and one had a broken leg. This was the start of a busy year! We also had fully grown tame cats left in the port, and individual kittens.
Towards the end of the year, I was also helping the dog protectora by taking tame cats and kittens found and left with them. We believe that a lot of this could have been, not down to uncaring Spanish people this time, but actually British people needing to return home. Being an animal lover it is hard to understand how anyone could do this, but I have to say that most were abandoned among the stray cats at places where they were fed, and likely to be found.
In previous years these cats would have stayed on the streets, being fed by kind people, and the litters would have grown up to be semi-feral. Due to our work ALL of these lovely animals are now in caring homes in Germany, and I am hopeful that we have seen the worst year for abandoned animals and that this particular recession-driven problem has largely passed.
In addition, whilst my neighbour Pam was feeding cats at 5 stations at the beginning of last year, now she only has 2 stops each morning. There are no longer any stray cats regularly fed in Calle Alcor, Darsena 2 or currently on the rocks. There remains a small colony of 6 beautiful cats by the Nautico, but the last young female will be sterilised this week. There are so many less port cats, but why?
The answer is that during last year along with the new abandonees, Almerimar Strays re-homed 8 of the long-term strays from the port, and one semi-feral kitten, and the last 2 rock cats are currently in foster homes awaiting transport to Germany. We ARE making HUGE progress.
And if anyone has doubts about where these lovely animals end up, enjoy the photo of 2 of last year’s abandoned kittens in their new home in Germany!
Happy Little TomCats