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 June 2009 - Nr. 6

VANCOUVER – The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) is asking anyone who is thinking of adopting a pet to consider going to their local animal shelter or rescue group instead of a pet shop or backyard breeder.

According to Al Hickey, HSC Western Regional Director, there are thousands of cats currently waiting for adoption in humane societies, SPCAs, animal shelters and rescue groups across Canada.

"Unfortunately, there are always plenty of cats to choose from," says Hickey. "However, especially during spring time animal rescue workers are often overwhelmed by the tremendous number of kittens and young cats who are homeless."

And while kittens are cute and adorable, Hickey recommends that adopters not overlook the mature cats who are waiting to be adopted.

"Kittens can be a lot of work and they require considerable attention," says HSC Chairman & CEO Michael O’Sullivan, whose family shares their home with feline friends.  "Mature cats also make great companions and often aren't as ‘high maintenance’," suggests O’Sullivan.

He says that June is often an excellent month in which to adopt a feline in need.

"June means that children, and many of their parents, are about to go on vacation. This can be an ideal time to get a new cat adjusted and acclimatized to their new family and home," states O'Sullivan.

"The world is already overpopulated with friendly felines who desperately need humans to care for them," points out O'Sullivan. Most people don’t realize that over a seven year period, two cats and their offspring can theoretically produce a staggering 420,000 kittens.  Buying cats from commercial breeders or pet stores only adds to the tragic situation. By adopting cats in need from animal charities you can be a part of the solution, not a part of the problem."

"Pets provide many benefits to their human guardians. As well as affection, love and companionship, pets can also lower blood pressure and even cholesterol and triglyceride levels," says O’Sullivan.

Top 10 Ways to Give Your Cat the Royal Treatment

  1. Scratching is very natural and necessary, so create several places where your cat can scratch. Scratching posts or boxes are always a hit with the felines!
  2. Exercise, most cats love to play, so look for toys that your companion can chase, pull, bat or climb into for fun.  Great and inexpensive cat toys include: paper bags, milk-carton rings, wadded-up paper and boxes.
  3. Keep your feline fur face looking and feeling great by frequently brushing their coat and clipping their nails.  Since cats regularly lick their coats to clean themselves, brushing regularly will help avoid hairballs and trimming their nails will keep their claws more square than pointed helping to protect you, your cat and your furniture.
  4. You will rarely if ever have to bathe your cat because felines wash themselves constantly. However, if you must bath your cat do so in warm water with mild soap – never use dog shampoo on a cat as it can be toxic.
  5. Keep your cat safe and happy by keeping them indoors.  A litter box will be required; use a plastic litter pan with about 2 inches of litter and place it in an out-of-the-way area. Be sure to clean the litter box DAILY!
  6. Give your feline friend a well-padded yet shallow bed for sleeping and keep the location in a draft-free area.
  7. We are what we eat. Avoid generic or little-known food brands as many of these contain inferior ingredients. Also never give your fur child bones, raw fish or milk.
  8. Register your furry friend up for free with The Humane Society of Canada’s Pet Recovery Team.  You get a free pet tag with their toll free number, your pet’s name and your own phone numbers on the reverse.  Also if your best friend goes missing list them at or call toll free 1-800-641-5463.
  9. Vaccinate! Protect your family member from rabies and other health challenges.
  10. The Humane Society of Canada asks you to spay or neuter your cat to make sure there are enough permanent loving homes for every little kitten.  Over a seven year period, two cats and their offspring can produce 420,000 kittens!  There are just not enough good homes to go around.

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