Homes wanted for feline influx of kittens

Adoption days set up at Kamloops pet stores

Until a few weeks ago, Barb Zibrik of the Kamloops and District Humane Society held out hope that this year, the kittens wouldn't come.

This year, spay and neuter efforts would bring down the numbers.

But in August, the calls about litters of kittens and cats needing homes started to pick up while calls from people looking to adopt felines did not.

Zibrik said Thursday she's organizing some adoption days at pet stores to promote adoptions and gather applications for the 50 or so kittens needing homes that the society has in foster homes.

"It's gotten bad. It's a little later this year than usual," she said.

"We're really overwhelmed right now with daily calls from people who want to 'get rid of' or re-home kittens, or even adult cats."

The all-volunteer society doesn't have a shelter, so it relies on a network of fosters and some donated space in pet stores like Total Pet on the North Shore.

Even so, finding good cat owners who will keep their pets forever, not just until they outgrow their cute stage, can be difficult.

All humane society kittens are spayed or neutered at eight weeks of age. About a week after they've recovered, they're ready for their new permanent homes.

"We always say spaying and neutering is the solution to this problem," said Zibrik.

But there are still people calling her with litters because they haven't had their cats spayed or neutered.

The society has a variety of kittens seeking homes, from Siamese and Himalayan to tortoise-shells, tuxedos, oranges and tabbies.

Charleen Holloway at the Kamloops SPCA said the shelter and fosters are also maxed out.

"Right now, I have 38 kittens in foster care and another 10 in the shelter," she said. "We don't have room, we have a waiting list. We may be able to get them into foster care for special circumstances."

Like Zibrik, she stressed spaying and neutering is the best solution. And like the humane society, the SPCA only adopts animals after they are spayed and neutered, so no kittens are sent out until they are at least eight or nine weeks old.

"I wish people were getting the message," she said.

While some people get kittens that are being given away for free, they don't consider the cost of a vet check, deworming, vaccinations and spaying or neutering - all of those are done with the kittens adopted out by the SPCA or the KDHS.

Zibrik is aiming at holding an adoption day at various pet stores each Saturday in September. So far, she's booked North Shore Total Pet on Saturday from 2 to 5 p.m., and Saturday, Sept. 14, at Total Pet on Summit Drive, also from 2 to 5 p.m.

The non-profit group is also holding a Big Fix coupon program for people on very low incomes for spaying and neutering. It will start in October.

To contact Zibrik, call 250-376-1366 and leave a message or email her at kamloopshumanesociety@gmail.com

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