Catvocates was created to start funding additional support for adoption promotions and spay-neuter initiatives. It is currently being led by Overseers Lisa Finkel, Ann-Louise Hittle, Sharon Malt, and Bebe Wunderlich.
The MSPCA’s first promotion began in the summer of 2011, and the results since then have proven extraordinarily successful! We’re excited to continue our efforts through 2019 and beyond. Will you consider supporting these efforts with a gift to help us defray the costs of cat adoptions and spay-neuter initiatives?
Adult cats create one of the MSPCA’s great ongoing challenges. Every year, more adult cats find their way to us than any other type of animal. These fabulous felines arrive at our adoption centers from many sources: the numerous strays found in buildings and neighborhoods who are brought to us by kind strangers; cats rescued from dangerous and difficult circumstances (such as hoarding situations); and, finally and sadly, cats who can no longer be kept by their owners due to illness, economic problems, or other life challenges.
- In 2011 alone, MSPCA took in 4,661 adult cats that were made available for adoption in its centers around the state. This was a 10% increase over the previous year.
- While the number of surrenders for other types of animals (and kittens) has decreased dramatically since 1985, the number of adult cat surrenders remained stable leading into 2011.
This statistic suggested the need to tackle the cat over-population issue from two angles: more adult-cat promotions AND subsidized spay/neuter programs.
And It’s Working!
Since the inception of Catvocates in 2011, we’ve made significant strides. Through strategic cat spay-neuter events and the introduction of Fee-Waived Cat Adoptathons, we have positively affected the intake rate of cats in our adoption centers as well as the adoption rate of adult cats.
- 2,507 adult cats have found new homes during our fee-waived adoption events!
- 205 cats in their senior years (12 years and over) were placed in adoptive homes in 2018, compared to 47 in 2011. We routinely place “super senior” cats now, ranging in age from 14-19!
- 22,718 cats were sterilized since the beginning of the Catvocates in 2011, which has contributed to a 55% reduction of cats being brought into our Adoption Centers in an eight-year period. Additionally, we continued our ambitious, targeted low-cost spay-neuter efforts for owned and free-roaming cats, increasing the number of surgeries by 116% since 2011.
- We expanded our efforts to help community cats – feral and free-roaming cats who reside in neighborhoods and need our help – with:
- Hosting Feral Cat Housing workshops to teach people how to build warm winter housing and feeding stations
- Offering free housing and feeding stations to compassionate caretakers of community cats
- Providing food to caretakers of community cats through each of our adoption centers
- We’ve introduced a brand new adoption promotion to help bonded pairs of adult cats find homes faster! ‘Purrfect Pairs’ offers a reduced adoption fee for pairs of adult cats who are truly bonded and need to go to a new home together. This allows potential adopters to more easily consider adding two cats to their family, removing a potential financial barrier to adoption.
And this year, we’re going the extra mile to remove barriers to adoption!
The cats who remain on our adoption floor the longest tend to be cats with medical issues. Dental surgery, as an example, has long been cited as a barrier to adoption due to cost. By completing dental surgeries in house prior to adoption, we have successfully found homes for cats who would have otherwise waited on our adoption floors for a long time. At the same time, by attending to the dental needs of these cats, we are able to alleviate their pain and improve their overall health quickly.
Hyperthyroidism in cats is yet another medical barrier to adoption; while treatable with a daily medication, the pressures and looming expense of regular veterinary care and daily medication often limits potential adopters. These cats often wait a long time on our adoption floor for a chance at a new life with a new family.
Now, thanks to a collaboration with the Catvocates, Dr. Jean Duddy, and Angell Animal Medical Center, we are able to offer a permanent, curative treatment for cats with hyperthyroidism: Radioactive Iodine Therapy (I-131 treatment). This one-time treatment eliminates the expense of adopting a cat with hyperthyroidism as it eliminates the cost of medication. And most importantly, it provides a healthier future for the cat.
We Still Have Work To Do…
Please join the Catvocates today. Your contribution will help fund these creative programs that reduce overpopulation and find homes for adult cats. Imagine a world where every healthy cat – who, by some chance, finds its way to our shelters – finds that “purr-fect match”. That’s the mission of the Catvocates.
Your support of cat adoption programs at the MSPCA will make a difference in the lives of cats in our area.
Click here to make a donation to support Catvocate programs
Or, learn more about spay/neuter programs at our Shalit-Glazer Clinic, MSPCA at Nevins Farm, or MSPCA Cape Cod.