Winter kittens making it tough to fill the kitty

The valley has seen an unusual influx of kittens this holiday season. - courtesy Cowichan Cat Rescue
The valley has seen an unusual influx of kittens this holiday season.
— image credit: courtesy Cowichan Cat Rescue

For the first time in 15 years of rescuing cats, Cowichan Cat Rescue has seen an influx in homeless kittens being rescued through the winter, the group’s Jean Hamilton reported.

“Nine more kittens from three separate litters have been located and targeted for rescue in the few days from Dec. 5 through the 8,” Hamilton wrote the News Leader Pictorial.

“Instead of having empty foster homes waiting for the spring kittens to arrive in May, the rescue is appealing to its already full foster homes and volunteers to take in more kittens (now).”

On top of that, the steady rescues are putting a strain on the group’s resources.

“Not only are there many kittens still coming in to the rescue, but many of them are ill and underweight. This is a result of the lack of food for the mothers, both during the later stages of their pregnancies and also when they are trying to feed their kittens.”

“Winter weather is not kind to homeless cats,” Hamilton said.

A recent “Fill the Kitty” food drive helped provide food for the hungriest of the colonies. Sales at craft fairs have also provided some funds to defray the winter rescue vet bills, at a time when fundraising activities are normally targeted to pay bills incurred during summer months.

“We have had no break at all this year,” said Hamilton.

Cowichan Cat Rescue asks anyone who knows of feral cats in their area to feed them if possible and make sure they have a water source.

Kittens should be reported to 250-743-6500 so they can be caught and cared for.

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