An­i­mal Res­cue with Marion Gar­nett

Ded­i­cated an­i­mal ex­pert Marion Gar­nett, founder of the Eal­ing An­i­mal Wel­fare Bazaar, con­tin­ues her col­umn

Harefield Gazette - - ANIMAL NEWS -

THE kit­ten sea­son has started with a vengeance. Hav­ing had a few qui­eter months, Houn­slow An­i­mal Wel­fare So­ci­ety (HAWS) is now un­der the im­pres­sion there is a stray mother cat and her kit­tens, in ev­ery shed in West Lon­don. They are tear­ing their hair out – help­ing a par­tic­u­larly large num­ber of stray cats who have been found in open sheds or else­where with their very young kit­tens.

This in­volves a lot of work on their part as the mother cat usu­ally has to be trapped (which is time-con­sum­ing) in or­der to make sure they can take the mother and kit­tens to­gether. If these cats don’t re­ceive help, the kit­tens are likely to die or will grow up as feral cats and the un-neutered mum will have more kit­tens.

It is clear to HAWS that many of the mother cats they are help­ing were once do­mes­ti­cated cats who have, most likely, been thrown out af­ter be­com­ing preg­nant.

Take Vi­o­let, for ex­am­ple. This young cat is gor­geous, gen­tle and friendly. She has ob­vi­ously been some­one’s pet in the past. How­ever, as an un-neutered stray, she has al­ready had three or four lit­ters of kit­tens. This time, when she was preg­nant, HAWS heard about her and one of their helpers rushed round and re­trieved her just in time so that, in­stead of her kit­tens be­ing born wher­ever Vi­o­let could find mea­gre shel­ter, she gave birth safely in­doors.

Vi­o­let’s six kit­tens were born on March 16 and the whole fam­ily is now in fos­ter care. Vi­o­let’s fos­ter mum de­scribes Vi­o­let as the best mother cat she has looked af­ter and she should know – Vi­o­let’s brood is the ninth mum and kit­tens she has fos­tered.

The kit­tens should be ready for hom­ing to­wards the end of May. They can be re­served be­fore­hand by ap­proved adopters who have had a suc­cess­ful home visit. But while think­ing about the kit­tens, don’t for­get Vi­o­let, who also de­serves a home where she can blos­som into a much-loved pet. If you would like to home Vi­o­let or one or two of her kit­tens call 020 8560 5443 or see hawsan­i­mals.org.uk

Mean­while, next week, I will be giv­ing an up­date on where you can get free and low cost neu­ter­ing car­ried out lo­cally.

n SIX OF ONE: Vi­o­let’s gor­geous kit­tens

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