Today is National Spay Day at the Humane Society of the United States, a worthy cause if ever there was one. Click on the link for more information.
Mick and I have a program of our own we've funded for several decades. We started out with two cats - my Sage and Boo from before our marriage - and adopted more from the huge feral colony that lived in the neighborhood where we had our stained glass studio. It was out-of-hand, so as we had extra money, we used a special program that Hamlett Spay and Neuter Clinic offered. We got a live trap from them, did the dirty deed, took them in for surgery, kept them inside to recuperate, and then released them. Many of them were previously owned and abandoned, and became adoptable by the end of the process. We ended up being the owners, of course. (Feel free to imagine a sheepish grin here.)
When we moved to the country, we had sixteen cats, all non-breeding but with special needs. Nine have died over the past six years, and we've replaced a few with local strays... of course, they've been neutered, too. Our mission continues, just in another place and time.
If more people would help with this, there would be far fewer animal control problems in the world. Unless you're on a farm where the natural cycle includes population control via predator and starvation, neutering is the only process that makes sense, not only to control populations but also to control disease. Think about a contribution to your local spay/neuter fund, won't you? Your veterinarian probably is tapped into a program and would be glad to accept a few extra dollars to funnel into this worthy cause.
So now for the fun - here are a few of my furry and lazy children:
Chai is my prodigal cat child who has been lost several times, we think locked into a storage shed somewhere nearby. One time she was gone for six weeks and I thought she had surely been taken from me for good. It was really a miracle when she returned and it took a few weeks for her to get her weight back. The last time she disappeared was only for two weeks. I think this is when my hair turned completely white. I can't even imagine having a human child of mine running away - the excruciating heartbreak and worry of that. It would kill me, I have no doubt.
Beamer was part of the car club (we give each litter themes) and became ill very suddenly with complications from his feline leukemia. He was a gorgeous and very photogenic cat. But a bully, and I have to say that there is much less stress in the colony since he left us.
Sassafras and his brother Gingko, came with us from the city. They have stories to tell at another time! Sassy is one of the most elegant cats I've ever seen. He's also a talker thanks to Mick, and a source of great irritation some early mornings.