New lives for aban­doned cats

Javea town hall backs new char­ity

Costa Blanca News (North Edition) - - SOCIAL SCENE - By Jack Troughton

CATLAND Javea is a new char­ity aimed at tack­ling the prob­lem of aban­doned cats in the town, re­duc­ing fe­line colonies and res­cu­ing kit­tens born on the streets of the re­sort.

The town hall is sup­port­ing the fully le­gal project and has granted the as­so­ci­a­tion 3,000m2 of pub­lic land in the Ram­blars, on the out­skirts of the town, to build a shel­ter.

The coun­cil, which has been in­volved since the be­gin­ning of the project, is able to make the land avail­able un­der a four-year rolling con­tract to a scheme seen as ben­e­fit­ing res­i­dents.

And plans for the refuge are ad­vanced and now need the ap­proval of the town ar­chi­tect be­fore con­struc­tion can be­gin.

Catland’s pres­i­dent Claire Wall said Mayor Jose Chulvi and Coun­cil­lor Doris Cour­celles had been “amaz­ing” in back­ing the as­so­ci­a­tion.

She said: “The town hall can­not give land away willynilly; only when it is of ben­e­fit to the town and the com­mu­nity. This refuge will ben­e­fit the cats and also the town; tak­ing away a prob­lem for the peo­ple of the town.

“Peo­ple are fed up with large colonies of cats but there is nowhere in Javea to take aban­doned cats to.”

Claire added: “Not all cats are suitable for the refuge; ac­tual feral cats are not suitable, they have their own habi­tats and keep down rats and ver­min. Aban­doned

“This is for do­mes­tic cats which join the colonies; aban­doned cats and kit­tens – it would be cruel to put wild cats, into a refuge.”

She said Catland was work­ing closely with the Javea Feral Cat As­so­ci­a­tion and the town’s an­i­mal char­ity APASA.

Claire said the char­ity would vet cats be­fore they were taken in to the refuge; they would be given a health check and neutered; while the li­cence from the Zoo­log­i­cal de­part­ment of Va­len­cia would al­low an­i­mals to be adopted.

She said au­thor­i­ties had ap­proved the de­sign of pens for the cats; there will be 10 pens mea­sur­ing 6m by 6m and 2.5m high and have lit­tle houses on dif­fer­ent heights and climb­ing frames, sur­round­ing a cen­tral area. Catland will be home to up to 150 cats.

“Cats will have the free­dom of the cen­tral gar­den area dur­ing the day; it will be cov­ered by a spe­cial mesh so there’s no es­cape for them.”

Por­ta­cab­ins will pro­vide of­fice, stor­age, prepa­ra­tion area for food, and a clinic; the refuge will be pow­ered with a gen­er­a­tor and so­lar pan­els.

Fund rais­ing started months ago and there is enough in the ac­count to start the build but Claire and her team will con­tinue to host fund rais­ing events and the web­site­land­ has pages to al­low peo­ple to make do­na­tions.

Like all char­i­ties, Catland needs pub­lic sup­port. “Ev­ery­one has said ‘we need a cat refuge’ in the town but no one seems to be do­nat­ing yet; although next year we will qual­ify for grants from Va­len­cia.”

She thanked su­per­mar­ket Ice­land for its sup­port and Desmond’s Sec­ond­hand Shop for do­nat­ing of­fice fur­ni­ture.

Claire (right) and friends fund rais­ing at Ice­land

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