It happens every year -- too may kittens and not enough homes. Those of us who rescue cats and kittens struggle for many reasons, but some of our battles could be alleviated. This letter addresses how the public can help. Selecting kittens for adoption is difficult, especially when we have to deny the pleas of well-meaning individuals. However, some do not proactively find a new home for the animal and feel they have done “the best thing” by bundling the poor pet in a duct-taped box and depositing it on the front steps of a rescue. This is not re-homing. This is abandonment.

Although the abandonment of the shoe-box kitten may have eased all worries and concerns of the owner, it assuredly added anxiety, stress, and unneeded expenses to those who are forced to accept it. Unexpected animals in a facility can quickly lead to overcrowding and sickness, behavioral issues, and on occasion, the pet’s death from depression. These disservices are compounded by the financial woes we encounter keeping food, litter, and veterinary supplies available.

Overwhelmed and hopeless, some rescuers simply quit. This amplifies the problem. What can you do? Fix your animals! There are many vets in our area plus a low-cost clinic (Wiregrass Spay/Neuter Alliance) available to help you. There is a local organization (Felines Under Rescue) that will help you pay for fixing your pets, feral cats, and your stray animals. What else can you do? Plan ahead for the re-homing of your pet. Call local rescues for ideas on how to place your animal. Post pictures on social media. Take out an ad in the newspaper. Put up flyers. Ask your family, friends and neighbors. In the end you will be satisfied that you have helped not only your pet, but also the rescuers.

Glenda Dennis

Dothan

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