Mother Nature never quits. She just goes round and round and round and it’s spring again. Along with the flowers that bloom in spring, are the endless kittens that bloom as well. Right on schedule, Mother Nature does her thing, and cats everywhere do their thing.
Animal shelters gear up for the onslaught of kittens that are left in boxes by their door. Little kids with kittens in a cardboard box in front of Walmart ask, “Lady, you want a kitten?” With your heart saddened by what you see, you have to say no; thinking of the cats and dogs you are already giving a home to now.
How do we get so many kittens in what seems all year ‘round?
Here are the facts—a cat and her offspring can give birth to over 420,000 kittens over a seven year period.
“No way,” you say, “What are these cats doing?” They are doing what Mother Nature calls them to do, as all other species do—they reproduce until it is brought to a halt.
If you are a cat breeder of a specific breed, this reproducing can be controlled, but if you have a cat, female or male, who roams the neighborhood, don’t be surprised to trip over a litter of kittens out there somewhere. And if these kittens all look different, blame it on the mommy cat since she can mate with lots of different males (toms) and have a litter of three to six kittens, all with different colors and faces.
Even sadder in this scheme of things is the harsh fact that so few will find homes. Many will suffer neglect, abuse, intentional death by cruel people and mother cats who may abandon their babies.
Those that get brought to animal shelters by good-hearted people do have a chance of being adopted and finding a home. But, because so many are brought to animal shelters, and in many cases little room or chance of adoption, they will be humanely euthanized.
If this brings tears to your eyes, it should. This is true with puppies, bunnies and many other species of baby animals. Those born in the wild or the ocean have an equally tough chance to survive. But back in our own backyards, you can bring it to a halt—the overpopulation of kittens and cats—you can spay or neuter these felines. Give them a chance at living.
If you own cats, SPAY OR NEUTER! If you don’t, please donate to spay/neuter programs and clinics available everywhere.
Cats are very unique animals, help to save them.
I always like to tell people who are wanting to adopt a cat or kitten—if you care, adopt a pair!
(Pat Chiri can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.)