A box of kittens was abandoned at Central Alberta Humane Society in 2017. Photo supplied.

Central Alberta Humane Society cared for 700 cats in 2017

With an intake of 700 cats in 2017 — a 20 per cent jump since the previous year — Central Alberta Humane Society is feeling “overburdened.”

Tara Hellewell, Central Alberta Humane Society executive director, said the shelter has run 10 per cent over capacity throughout 2017.

Cat over population is an issue in Canada according to a recent report by Canadian Federation of Humane Societies. The country wide problem is also a local one, said Hellewell, who is also one of the directors at CFHS.

The report states cats and dogs are Canada’s most popular pets and while cats are found in more Canadian households than dogs, they do not receive the same care and consideration in society as their canine counterparts.

Hellewell couldn’t agree more.

“Is it acceptable for our dogs to roam freely? No. Cats are domesticated animals that need the same care and attention as dogs,” she said, adding that cats shouldn’t be allowed to roam freely.

As of last week, the shelter was housing 150 cats in comparison to 30 dogs, she said.

At one point in the summer, there was a waiting list of 400 cats at the shelter – a number that’s doubled since 2016.

Fifteen of the 20 per cent intake increase in 2017 was among the kitten population, she said.

As to what the underlying problem is, Hellewell blames the economy, Red Deer’s transient population and varying municipality bylaws.

“Red Deer doesn’t have licensing (bylaw) for cats right now so we can’t actually tell you how many cats are living in Red Deer,” she said, adding that Sylvan Lake does.

The number of owned cats in Canada is about 9.3 million, according to the CFHS report.

The City of Red Deer does have a bylaw in place that doesn’t allow pet owners to let their cats roam around on the streets, Hellewell said.

“But you still have cats roaming freely outside that aren’t fixed,” she said.

Owners not being able to afford to spay or neuter their cats is another issue, she said.

Hellewell said many pets are not being cared for and the responsibility falls on humane societies who are in need of funding.

See related: Humane society cash lottery tickets now on sale



mamta.lulla@reddeeradvocate.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Pictured here is one of the 100s of kittens that were housed at Central Alberta Humane Society in the summer of 2017. Photo supplied.

Just Posted

WATCH: Red Deer students get active, healthy

Healthy Active Schools Symposium takes place in schools

Red Deer cowboy singer honours Humboldt Broncos families

Ivan Daines’s tribute song can be heard on YouTube

Red Deer Battle of the Badges raises thousands for Humboldt

A charity hockey game between Red Deer RCMP and Red Deer Emergency… Continue reading

City street sweeping has begun

Residential alerts available at Notify Red Deer

Carbon court: Saskatchewan seeks Court of Appeal ruling on federal carbon tax

REGINA — The Saskatchewan government is asking the province’s Appeal Court to… Continue reading

WATCH: Alberta’s revenue shortage concerns Central Albertans

Public Interest Alberta hosted the discussion at Red Deer College on Tuesday

‘The Heat’ doc examines gender barriers for top female chefs

TORONTO — In making a documentary about top female chefs, Toronto filmmaker… Continue reading

Hank Azaria willing to stop voicing Apu on ‘The Simpsons’

NEW YORK — Hank Azaria is ready to stop voicing Kwik-E-Mart owner… Continue reading

US stocks mostly fall in wobbly trading as costs, rates rise

NEW YORK — U.S. stocks are wobbling and trading mostly lower Wednesday… Continue reading

Driver was operating pickup truck while seated in folding lawn chair, police allege

THUNDER BAY, Ont. — Police say a driver pulled over in Thunder… Continue reading

Emergency services scramble when small plane touches down on Calgary street

CALGARY — A small plane carrying six people made an emergency landing… Continue reading

Climbers saved from avalanche near Jasper after calling Poland for help

Pair was climbing in Mount Robson Provincial Park when they were hit

Temporary traffic change on Hwy 2, south of Red Deer

Bridge construction holding up lanes

WORLD CUP: Last stand for stars of Spain’s golden generation

MADRID — After recent struggles at major tournaments, the remaining stars of… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month