Feral cat colony at Randburg Civic Centre feel at home

Katherine Matthews with cats she had previously saved helped from the Randburg Feral cat colony. Photo: Supplied

Its been over a month that a trap, neuter and release programme was implemented to assist the Randburg Civic Centre with its feral cat colony and so far over a dozen cats have been sterilised.

Two organisations, Pets Empowerment in Townships (Pets) and the South African Feral Foundation (Safe) stepped up to assist the centre.

Katherine Matthews from Pets said the public response has been amazing and enough funds were raised to sterilise 12 cats.

“So far nine have been trapped and over the past couple of weeks, I have counted 10 more that still need to be caught,” she explained.

Matthews explained that Safe keeps all the funds that have been donated and Radiokop Animal Clinic gives them welfare rates and adds another welfare if they trap more than five cats at a time.

“This a programme that will never be stopped even when all the cats have been sterilised as we have set up five eating and sleeping stations at the centre,” she said.

She added that they will continue to feed the cats on alternate days as they need to monitor the existing cats to see if there are any newcomers. The cats still keep the rat population at bay.

The organisations request that the public does not feed the cats themselves as they are in a routine of being fed at certain times and days which also helps when they need to trap.

However, the community is most welcome to donate dry cat pellets to feed them as that will be much needed.

The community is welcomed to be part of the feeding programme. Matthews said starting a programme like this can be very rewarding as you start to get to know the cats, “You can name them and they all recognise your call and come out at feeding times which makes it easier to monitor them and to spot the newcomers.”

She believes its imperative that other businesses that have cats around the premises start implementing the same programme as it stops over-breeding of cats, keeps pest control down and stops other cats coming onto the property, because as soon as you remove a colony a new one will just move in and the cycle starts all over again.

Matthews concluded with the hope that the public knows that most rescue organisations are volunteer-based.

They all have full day jobs and all work is done by volunteers at night and over the weekends, “We do not get paid at all so we rely totally on public funding to pay for the sterilisations and veterinary care as well as the food.”

ALSO READ: Not a total ‘CAT’astrophe 

  AUTHOR
Neo Phashe
Journalist

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