Neighbors alarmed about missing cats
Beverly Kilroy, who has lived on Manzanita Lane in Nevada City for the past 58 years, is “fed up” with the mysterious disappearance of domestic neighborhood cats throughout the past few years.
“There’s just not an overflow of cats,” a visibly disturbed Kilroy said. “There’s just not many left around here anymore.”
Since January, Kilroy has lost four cats. Another concerned citizen, D.D. Johnson, has lost two.
They’re not the only ones. Several residents in the area of upper Nevada Street say they’re disturbed by the trapping and disappearance of a number of family cats.
“I felt real bad for this young couple,” Kilroy said. “(The cat) was like their kid and they were just frantic about finding it, but they never did.”
According to Kilroy, the epidemic of the missing family pets has been happening roughly for the past five years.
“There’s been a lot of speculation as to what’s going on,” Johnson said. “But for certain, I remember on, I think it was a May morning and Beverly called me and was hysterical because one of her cats was in a trap that had been set in the bushes. We couldn’t get the trap open. It was horrible. It had been sitting out in the sun all day, and if it had stayed out there any longer, it would have died from heat stroke I’m sure.”
Johnson is not the only one horrified by the discovery of family cats caught in small traps on Manzanita Lane.
“I was out in my yard and I heard a cat howling,” neighbor Carol Sharps said. “I ran over and saw a cat trapped in a trap down on the street. Sure enough, it was my neighbor’s cat. It’s apparent to me that people are not trapping just feral cats, they are just trapping cats in general.”
According to both Johnson and Kilroy, three cats from the vicinity of Nevada Street rentals The Cottages have also gone missing, and three more cats are missing from another home on Nevada Street.
“We’re just beside ourselves because these are our pets,” Johnson said. “They’re all spayed or neutered. They have their shots. I know it’s not coyotes or foxes because I have hens and I haven’t lost a single one of them. I know this is not the work of a wild animal.”
As Kilroy fought back tears, she added: “No one knows what becomes of these cats, whether they are killed or dumped. It is my understanding it is lawful to get a trap but you have to turn the animal into Animal Control or notify the pet owner but none of this has been done.”
Lt. Ron Earles of the Nevada County Animal Shelter said that if a person is trapping any kind of domestic animal, it is their responsibility to either turn the animal into the Animal Shelter or return the pet to its rightful owner.
“You just don’t have the right to dump them somewhere,” Earles said. “You need to take them to us. If it is found that a person has violated this, then we would file it with the district attorney and take the person to court.”
With the mysterious disappearance of so many cats, other concerns have been raised.
“The two cats we lost were very valuable,” said resident David Ayala. “One was a good mouser. We have an old barn that gets infested with mice and now he’s gone. You know, we’re on the edge of town and we’re subject to vermin and without the cats the mice population rises and that leads to more rattlesnakes.”
Kilroy, Johnson, Ayala and Sharps feel that the tragic disappearance of so many beloved pets on Manzanita Lane has left many homes feeling empty.
“This is just horrible because we don’t know what’s become of all these pets,” Johnson said.
To contact Staff Writer Lindsey Croft, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 477-4247.
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