Cat crisis as population grows

The East Lincolnshire branch of the RSPCA is calling for the public to help bring the feline population under control by neutering their cats.

The branch is struggling for space with too many cats in its care, and it is hoped neutering will reduce the crisis.

In 2013, Marshland Veterinary Centre, in Freiston, set up a local cost price neutering scheme in conjunction with the branch.

The following year, the veterinary surgery neutered 130 cats using the same scheme.

A spokesman for the RSPCA branch said: “For several years now, we have been trying to put procedures and schemes into place to encourage and facilitate cat neutering, to prevent the types of problems we are seeing this year.

“It makes us very sad that, in 2016, people still don’t understand how vital neutering their cat is.”

Becky Harper, Lincolnshire inspector, said: “Sadly, 2016 has been a massive step backwards with regard to cat numbers, especially in the Boston area, and all local charities and vets are struggling to cope.”

Pet owners are encouraged to neuter their cats in order to try to control the growing cat population which can be caused by unwanted pregnancy.

The RSPCA spokesman added: “Some pet owners may also not realise that cats can get pregnant from four months of age and that is when they need to be neutered to stop unwanted pregnancies.”

Marshland Veterinary Centre said it had two cats brought in who they were trying to find space for, while Pilgrim Veterinary Surgery, part of MediVet Boston, had five dumped cats brought in and five left outside in cat carriers.

So far this year, the East Lincolnshire branch of the RSPCA has rehomed more than 150 cats and kittens, and has around 30 more in its care.