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Kittens flood local rescue organizations

Charlie Chaplin looked hardly a tramp as he curled asleep cozily on a shelf in a multi-tiered display cage in AnimalSave, Monday afternoon.

Chaplin, a 3-month-old kitten, with a little black mustache punctuating the tip of his milk-white muzzle, is one of the several kitties inundating local animal shelters during the present feline breeding season.

“All the programs in the county are full,” said Emily Snelling, executive director of AnimalSave. “At this time of the year, the cats that weren’t spayed are giving birth to kittens. This is something we can expect as along as it’s warm, ’till late fall. Last year, it went on ’till winter as we had a warm winter.”



At present, 55 kittens are awaiting adoption in foster homes, said Debra Sandler, program director at AnimalSave.

The Nevada County Animal Shelter is unable to take in new felines or their litters, said Ron Earles, supervising animal control officer at the shelter.




“Basically, if someone wants to leave their cat with us we’d tell them they’d have to wait till we get some space,” Earles said. “Right now, they’d probably have to wait for one or two days.”

Animal shelters need help from the community to ease the situation, Snelling said.

“If someone can take in a cat, that’s great,” she said. “We also need more foster parents, donations and assistance with spaying and neutering the animals.”

Adopting a kitten or a cat from AnimalSave costs $60, according to Marie McNitt, a volunteer with the group. Adoption fee for a feline from the Nevada County Animal Shelter is $50, Earles said.

Having a cat could cost its owner anything between $50 to $100 a month, Sandler said.

For those wanting a adopt a cat, it’s important they find the right match, Snelling said.

“Different cats have different personalities,” she said. “Some are more shy, while some are more affectionate. Sometimes an adult cat is better for someone than a kitten. You just want to get a pet that suits your lifestyle.”

AnimalSave helps match the right pet with the appropriate owner, Snelling said.

A more permanent solution to the problem is to spay and neuter one’s pet, she added.

“Spaying helps them be less aggressive,” Snelling said. “It’s wise to get them spayed and neutered anyway because cats always find ways to get out (of the house).”

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To contact Soumitro Sen, e-mail soumitros@theunion.com or call 477-4229.


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