I hope you enjoy this issue of The Kitty Times. I have some interesting stuff to share this month, so I'll get right to it!


First on the agenda for this issue is a big sigh of relief. The state of Wisconsin has decided not to go forward with their rumored intentions of opening up a hunting season on feral cats after all. At issue was the fact that about 2 million stray and roaming cats are responsible for the death of more than 39 million song birds each year in the state. A citizens' group submitted the question regarding ferals to their state legislature to see if they wished to develop a bill that would place cats on the unprotected species list. Currently, they are not on any lists. If something like that passed, it would have made shooting them legal, just for trespassing. Luckily, the governor refused to consider it, and many cat advocates wrote in to complain. This does not mean it can't happen in the future, but for now, as a representative of the Dept. of Natural Resources said, "This isn't going to go anywhere."


Although this is a newsletter about cats, I am including this link to a story about a dog, because it illustrates a couple of things that I am always interested in sharing, namely, that there are kind people out there who rescue some of the saddest, most abused animals, no matter what they are, and that this kind of thing happens to cats, too. Also, this company, the Pet Medicine Chest, is helping this family by providing the natural products that are saving this animal's life when all the traditional products weren't helping. This is a good resource to save somewhere, in case you ever need this information for your own pets, or a friend's, some day.

Here is the story link:


And here is the company link:



I have no connection with the magazine, Cat Fancy, but I just wanted to mention an article I saw in the July 2005 issue about second hand smoke. If you know anyone who has cats and smokes in their homes, this one-page story might help them to understand that it is extremely harmful to their cats. One of the reasons it's worse for cats is that they lick themselves. If they are in an atmosphere with smoke particles settling on their fur, they will lick the residue when they are grooming themselves. This means not only do they get it in their lungs, but also in their digestive tracts. Cigarette smoke contains many toxins that can cause a variety of cancers if ingested, including lymphoma, a cancer of the intestines, that is deadly for cats. And there is no cure. For every year a cat is exposed to second hand smoke, multiply their risk by that number. For instance, if a cat lives with a smoker for 5 years, its chance of dying of cancer is 5 times greater. Another cancer they can get is called squamous cell cancer, or SCC, and it occurs as a tumor in the mouth. This is the fourth most common tumor that cats get, by the way. And it's probably because of so many who are forced to breathe smoke. Anyway, just a warning to pass along to anyone you know who is endangering their cats this way. (By the way, it isn't helping them either. Or their children. But I will try to stay neutral here....)


This time of year is what we call "kitten season," because we get a lot of them in at the shelter, and also because a lot of folks are sending me questions about their cats who are pregnant now. I try to help them work out any problems they are having, or just comfort them by letting them know that Mother Nature provides their pets with instincts so mama cat knows what to do, even if she's never done it before. However, sometimes conditions lead to a glitch in the instinct department and mama kitty may abandon (or even kill) her babies. If you find your kitty isn't caring for her young, you may be forced to hand raise them yourself. I have listed some resources to use for guidance and information at this website:

http://www.the problemcat.com/babies.html

My final comment on that, though, is this: Get her spayed as soon as she weans the kitties. There are already too many unwanted cats in the world, and it is far more cruel to produce more and more cats that will die from a number of hazards after they've grown up.


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