Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Thank you SPCA Florida

This little kitty is looking forward to a new home.
It looks like all of the cats were captured over the last two days and moved to the SPCA facility in Lakeland, FL for medical treatment and adoption. A total of 73 cats were taken from this small two-bedroom mobile home. It was just a week ago, that Hernando County Commissioner Diane Rowden came to the rescue and put together this amazing plan to save these cats.

"We are down to the extremely skittish ones," said Sandra Bartareau of Cats Everywhere,Inc. on Monday. It took Bartareau and an SPCA trapper Bruce Nance an hour to catch a very agile black feline that took to hiding in cabinets, jumping from drawer to drawer. "If only they knew this means getting a better life."

By now, everything in the house is covered with feces and saturated with urine -- floors, furniture, counters, strewn belongings. The stench of ammonia permeates the air. Fleas, flies and cat hair are everywhere. It isn't pretty looking through a dingy window and is a horrific scene when viewed from inside, according to the trappers.

Smile -- Jessica Lawson and Bruce Nance  with the last cats.

Loading cats for long trip and new adventure.

The SPCA Florida in Lakeland is a magnificent facility, according to Community Relations Manager Jessica Lawson. She says it costs about $300 to examine, test, treat and neuter each cat. All of this is done in their full-service hospital. Some of the cats will be placed in foster homes. This is done to give some of the cats time to adjust to their new lives and it is also a bit of marketing strategy -- to keep the number available within reason and provide a variety for a adoption. Lawson added, tours of the facility are available, as the SPCA is proud to show the public how contributions are applied for the health and welfare of dogs and cats in their care.

They set three traps on available floor space Monday night -- each containing a bowl of cat food. By Tuesday morning all three traps were sprung and three more cats were about to set out on a new journey. A fourth cat was trapped overnight in the backyard. Bruce Nance spent an hour banging on walls, looking in closets and under furniture for stragglers. He was pretty sure there weren't anymore in the house. But just in case, he left dishes of food on a shelf near the window and a litter box within sight. Neighbors will check from that vantage point for any sign of cats.

There will be much for our neighborhood to celebrate -- but there is still a lot to do. Once we know the cats are safely taken, the home must be destroyed. Then there is dealing with an ineffectual homeowners association.

HOA Board Members converge?
For now, we pause for just a minute to admire what we have accomplished so far and thank those who made it possible.

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