Every Life Should Have Nine Cats

HAWS make desperate appeal for new foster homes for unwanted cats and kittens

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"What greater gift than the love of a cat?" - Charles Dickens

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Everybody loves cats. OK maybe not everybody, but in the UK we have around 7.5 million cats living as domestic pets - that's about cat for every eight people.

And cat lovers are nothing new. Cats have been recorded as human companions further back in history than ancient Egypt, some evidence going back 9,500 years!

It's easy to see why they're popular animals of choice, with characteristic traits like independence, cleanliness, affection and of course cuteness.

The problem today is, not all cat owners think about their responsibilities when taking on a new pet. Lack of neutering has lead to a recent explosion in the population of cats and kittens. Just one pair of cats and their kittens can produce 420,000 offspring in a mere seven years.

One group trying to manage the load are west London charity Hounslow Animal Welfare Society (HAWS), whose efforts see them re-home hundreds of stray and unwanted cats and kittens every year.

Despite their best efforts, with the number of homeless animals, HAWS are currently feeling the strain. And it's not just smaller charities like HAWS that are affected, well-funded charities nationwide are overstretched and the situation is reaching crisis point.

So we're told we are surrounded by cat lovers, well it's time to mobilise this army! HAWS are desperately appealing for new foster homes for their unwanted cats and kittens. HAWS have no premises and so rely entirely on volunteers to give a cat or kitten a roof over its head until it finds a loving home.

Many people aren't aware of fostering, but it is a great alternative to adopting if you'd love to have a cat (or cats) around your home, but your situation is changeable.

You can foster cats temporarily, so get all the fun of cat companionship without having to be in a position of commitment.

HAWS will pay for all the vets bills whilst you are taking care of your cat/kittens, and they will help with food, litter, bedding and can even supply a pen. Taking care of just one cat could release a space for other fosterers to take a family. HAWS, unlike some larger charities, will never put a healthy animal down.

Alternatively, if you've thought about giving a permanent home to a cat or kitten, now is a great time to do it. Don't put it off, you will wonder why you never did it sooner.

For further information please see: http://www.haws-animals.org.uk/ or call Samantha-Jane Hunt on 07956 207126 or email: miaucat85@googlemail.com

June 16, 2010