Why Spay and Neuter?
We sometimes get asked; “Isn’t spay and neuter cruel?”
We wish we could take everyone ‘behind the scenes and see the suffering we witness due to a massive overpopulation of cats. What’s really cruel is the suffering that goes on among the huge number of unwanted cats and kittens born every day into an unwanted existence. Like someone once said; “The kittens are born just to die.” The problem is not unique to Greece, but here you’ll find bushes and derelict buildings practically ‘alive’ with feral kittens scurrying around.
Illness and infectious diseases are incredibly common, and most kittens do not survive their first winter. They are considered a pest on the same level as rodents! Once they stop nursing it becomes a battle for survival - especially when hotels and tavernas close after the summer - it becomes a non-stop struggle to find food. Many die of starvation and malnutrition and many kittens will have caught a virus from mama cat. We have witnessed so many sickly kittens fighting hard for their survival, and they’ve experienced incredible suffering, way too early in life. The life expectancy of a Greek cat is two years - and many of them literally drag themselves through this short miserable life span.
For surviving females they go through endless cycles of giving birth, many of them while they’re sick. And without neutering in place you’ll find large groups of aggressive males fighting over one female that doesn’t stand a chance! Or males running off with small 4 months old "kittens" as prized possessions to mate. Like our vet once said; It’s basically rape. We’re not making it sound worse than it is - it’s the reality and it’s not pretty!! The males get into vicious territorial fights and inflict serious wounds to each other - not to mention the territorial making of territory -during mating season the smell is all too familiar!
Basically with TNR we help the cat population live a life with greater dignity and prevent the thousands and millions of unwanted kittens suffering miserably. Also TNR prevents other serious health problems:
“Spaying helps prevent uterine infections and breast tumors, which are malignant or cancerous in about 50% of dogs and 90% of cats. Spaying your pet before her first heat offers the best protection from these diseases. Neutering your male companion prevents testicular cancer and some prostate problems.”
- Quote via www.aspca.org
God’s Little People Cat Rescue does TNR when we happen to come across colonies in various places (as an example in dangerous spots along a road), or if new cats appear in the field where we feed stray cats or at our own place. We recently targeted locally and will continue to do "clean up" whenever we spot more - which we do almost every month. TNR is an important part of our job to prevent the appearance of the many sick and needy cats we rescue every year.
Please consider donating towards our ongoing TNR campaigns. Each neutered cat also receives a shot for worms and fleas/ticks. 30 euros covers one cat being spayed or neutered and will not only contribute to a much better quality of life for each cat but will also prevent the misery of thousands of unwanted lives!
And in case you’re not familiar with just how many lives one single female and male are responsible for, just take a look at this pyramid.
Pyramid and text via adoptapetshelter.org:
“By spaying and neutering just one male and one female cat, more than 2,000 unwanted births can be prevented in just four years - and more than 2 million in 8 years!”
This chart is based on one un-spayed female, her mate and all of our offspring producing 2 litters per year, with an average of 2.8 surviving kittens per litter.