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People killing newborn kittens


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#1 Catsfriend

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 03:08 PM

I just would like to share one story with you, because it made me so upset today and I wonder whether we can somehow stop such 'bad habits'. Sorry, it is a bit long, but I want to tell the whole story. You know that I just got purebred Russian Black babies born this morning. They will sell for $600 each when they are 3 months old. They are more than that valuable to me and will get the best of the best upbringing and go to the best homes only that value them as much as I do. You may also know that, about one month ago, I brought 4 pure black domestic kittens belonging to other people to my vet in Adelaide, for cheap desexing, and helped to find good homes for the remaining two of them who I could manage to have vaccinated and microchipped, too. Now, those 4 kittens looked just like my purebred black Russians. Seriously. This is one of the two who I found a really good home for: IPB Image When I advertised them on the Internet and mentioned in my ad that they looked like black Russians I actually got several calls from Adelaide pet shop owners and wanna-be breeders who wanted them undesexed and unchipped and offered good pay... Of course, I refused such offers and didn't even tell the kittens' previous owners about them. But the story continues: At the time, about a month ago, when I picked up the kittens for desexing, their mother was supposed to go for desexing, too, but when I came to that home to pick her up I realised that she was only days away from giving birth to a new litter. So, I refused to take her along and and left her there. Today, I called the people up to share my good news and to ask how many new kittens they have got, so we can start advertising them soon. "One", the owner said. I remembered that huge belly which this cat had, and I said, "No. That can't be true." After some talking, the owners admitted that she had several more kittens which they "got rid of". They left only one to her, because they 'knew that she wouldn't get pregnant again as long as she is nursing' and they 'didn't want to talk to all their family and friends and neighbours again just to get rid of the other kittens'. I really had to bite my tongue not to say what was on my mind. When I was visiting them, this family made a really good impression to me. Definitely not poor, a by far bigger and nicer home than I have, and at least three household members working and earning. But obviously the contents of their wallet does not reflect on those people's minds. Now I also know that it is not the first time they did it, i.e. killed newborn kittens. When I was there they showed me a baby kitten from the second female cat they have. At that time it was about 5 weeks old, and they said, the cat has one kitten only. The other ones she had, 'did not survive'. Today, when I called they told me that this one kitten is 'ready to go' and I shall start advertising it. I actually have found a new home for this kitten already, here, locally. Despite of the lack of a picture which the owners of the kitten promised but never delivered. The kitten is promised to people who are willing to wait and very happy to pay only $150 for all the vet services needed (desexing, vaccinating, microchipping). And next week, I am picking up the mother of this kitten and will drive her with 3 other cats for desexing to Adelaide. To at least stop this one killer household from causing more harm. The only question is: How do I talk to these people who are doing such horrible things to their cats and have been doing so obviously on a regular basis for years, and how do I convince them to leave the 7 weeks old baby kitten with mum until it is really ready to move on? I am afraid that they will give it to some stupid family friend instead who drops in by accident and finds the kitten 'cute' and gets it 'for the kids' ... you know that story... The owner actually told me on the phone today that they are not too keen about keeping the mother either, as those $65 for her desexing 'are really a big sacrifice' for them, and I could advertise her for rehoming, too, if that would give them their money back. Of course, I was considering immediately to take her and her one kitten in foster care straight away, but I would have to keep them in a cage to protect my purebreds, which is not the kindest solution either for a cat used to run free outdoors, I think. What would you do? This cat-owning family really 'annoys the hell out of me' - but I am sure there are thousands more of them out there, and they probably consider their acting to be 'just normal and reasonable'.
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#2 Heather Sharada

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 08:09 AM

That removal and destruction of newborns was common when I was a child - well 65 years ago and I am sure that farmers/country folk would still often do this. Our "mum" cat had several litters but only ever had one to rear....Dad did what responsible owners of those days did - desposed of the others. It is very distressing but I don't think you will be able to convince them that it is not accurate....at least - small blessing - they are not rearing kittens to run wild and have feral kitten after feral kitten. There is a good leaflet that promotes desexing that is produced by the Government and it may be that your local Council can give you one. You can really only discourage them genetly but they are unlikely to take your advice but at least if you get the cat desexed there will be no more kittens in thsat household for the time being. I knew a person who regularly replaced her desexed cats with un-desexed as the former got killed on the road and recently moved a distance and wanted me to do something with her three cats - one with 5 newborn kittens....this would have been the 3rd time I had helped her out and I was fuming. The Rescue Group that took the cats said "She's sad not bad" and showed more understanding than I did. These days I have nothing to do with her beyond a Hi in passing. Some people can't learn and I have to look after my own corner....can't save them all.

#3 Heather Sharada

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 08:24 AM

http://www.teatreegu...rotect_both.pdf That is on protecting wild life The one that follows is the Dept of Primary Industry in Vic - promoting early age desexing http://new.dpi.vic.g...t-care/desexing this next one is slightly irrelevant but very informative - lots of links http://www.ccac.net....and_legislation This last one is very good - it describes how you should proceed in explaining about desexing - rather than debating. http://www.savingpet...atory-desexing/

#4 kittenmitten

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 08:37 AM

as Heather said, what you are describing sadly is what was common practice many years ago, in fact my own grandad and grandma used to do that regularly with the cats they had, as they had 9 kids, growing up in the depression and war years, and spending money on the cats was not an option. Thnakfully a lot of peoples attitudes have moved on since then, but there will always be the money hungry ones determined to make money from the kittens, and who think that the registered breeders want to keep that money all to themselves, and those to whom cats are nuisances, and so killing kittens (and puppies), like this is no more than also killing mice, cockroaches etc. The bets you can do is like the starfish story - make the difference to those you can, and not waste emotional time and energy on the unwinnable. I would personally be getting the kitten and mum away from there, as their thinking that if she has a kitten on her she won't get pregnant again is faulty - that is not true.

#5 Heather Sharada

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 06:09 PM

I forgot to cover the mum and kitten and yes I would also be bringing them home if you really want to help....most cats given the opportunity will be pregnant again when the kittens are around 6 weeks old or even younger if they are just rearing one kitten.

#6 Catsfriend

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 06:54 PM

Thanks, Heather and kittenmitten, I will certainly pass these 'bad news' on to the owners, you bet (I knew this anyway and they should know it, too, as one of their 2 cats has delivered again within 4-5 months after the last birthgiving, so she did get pregnant even while nursing her last 4 !!! kittens which they allowed to live). I have already arranged for a de-sexing appointment for this mother cat next Friday, so, that has been taken care of, and they will pay their meagre $65 for that. I'm driving her to my Adelaide vet (plus 3 other female cats of other people, hoping that noone of them has become pregnant meanwhile again) ... but my concern at this moment is mainly about the 7-8 week old, very cute kitten. As I said I have already arranged for a home for this kitten with people who don't mind waiting for another month and are happy to pay the (discounted) vet costs. This boils down to convince the owners of the mother cat to feed this kitten for another month and to teach them how to do the right things about socialing this kitten properly, instead of giving it away for free to some 'friends' who pop in by accident and want it because it is sooo cute, as they were used to do in the past years. Basically, it is not a bad home this family has, you know, there's always someone at home and they sit together and talk and have fun and pet their cats, and there is a little dog and there are children and a very old grandma, too. Altogether, they are really nice people, they just need to raise their awareness. I am certainly still a learner myself, but these people have absolutely NO knowledge about cats! I think there is no need to rehome the two adult cats they have, once they are desexed, but there is a need to change the attitude of this family, so they start to appreciate and value their two cats! If we can make this happen, these two cats will have a wonderful home right where they are now and where they have grown up, and they could stay there and be well looked after for the rest of their lives. That is what I really want. I also want to make sure the 7 wks old kitten and the newborn one can stay there until they are about 3 months old. I have seen the enormous difference in behaviour in this family's last litter: The 2 kittens who stayed in this household were just wonderful, heatlhy and confident kittens - whereas those two who they gave away at 7 weeks of age were a total disaster. In summary, my intention is to change the attitude of cat owners, rather than taking away cats from bad (uneducated) people to give them to good (educated) people. I hope that makes sense. :shy:
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#7 Heather Sharada

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 06:56 AM

Do you think you can get the person who is taking the kitten to call round and see it and ask if they can come and visit it from time to time? If the people know for certain that it already has a home they may be less inclined to spontaneously g ive it away. Perhaps the new owner might be able to bring around a little bit of kitten food - maybe a small pack of dry kitten food and a few cans once it is eating well...."So it will be used to the food when it comes to my house" Also compliment them on the super nature of the last kittens they reared...and explain that the ones who stayed longer and had the interaction with the children made them wonderful family pets whereas the others are taking time. Good on you for trying.

#8 Rachelle

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 02:56 PM

Sadly similar events, and much worse, happen here on a daily basis. I try to educate however people don't want to listen, don't want to change, basically they just don't care. It makes me so frustrated, and sad. Good luck




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