Rescue In Action: Determined Helpers In Mississauga
Written By: A TCR Feral Colony Caregiver.
In the spring of 2010 someone in Mississauga had three unspayed female cats. The cats were let roam and then their owners moved away. The abandoned felines found a nearby vacant lot where they could live among the junk and weeds and, of course, were soon joined by an un-neutered male.
Some of the original cats and their offspring survived the winter and in early August a TCR volunteer found the colony. By then it consisted of about twenty cats of various ages including four month old kittens. They were starving and the volunteer began feeding as well as taming. She started with juveniles and soon got six tame enough to pick up. She had those kittens neutered, found a foster home, took two to an adopt-a-thon and got them adopted.
Unfortunately people who live in townhouses adjacent to the vacant lot objected to her feeding. One arrogant couple did everything possible to hinder her efforts. He screamed abuse, threatened (with a hatchet), cut down trees to block access, threw out the food and water dishes on a daily basis and trashed all shelters.
In spite of the abuse, the volunteer persisted and plans were made to take another young gray male cat on Thanksgiving Monday to get him neutered on Tuesday morning. But just before that, the volunteer noticed that some of the cats had suddenly disappeared. We searched the lot and sadly found four dead adult cats, plus very sick one (sadly, the one who was scheduled to be adopted). It was rushed to an emergency clinic where a vet said the cat had definitely been poisoned – probably with anti-freeze and had to be euthanised as that was the only humane option.
In the vacant lot we found little plastic bags that had been ripped open by animals. They contained cat food and antifreeze. We also found two litters of young kittens screaming for their mothers (we assume their mothers had died of poisoning). TCR volunteers took them and are bottle-feeding them.
Eight cats still live in the vacant lot. At least two (probably the original mothers) are quite tame and will sit in the volunteer’s lap. Peel police have visited the neighbours who are suspected of doing the poisoning and at least for now the food dishes have not been thrown out and no more cats have been found poisoned.
Foster homes for the remaining cats would be greatly appreciated. If you would like to foster for this colony, please fill in our Foster Application today and state it is for the “Determined Helpers In Mississauga: Feral Cat Colony“.
Special thank you to the colony caregivers and foster parents that help, or have helped, the cats and kittens – you are true kitty heroes! Without your determination, these cats would have no hope.