Marika Donnelly has nightmares filled with fluffy kittens.
White ones, black ones, brown ones and ginger ones. It's not surprising, she says, as she almost sits on a cat sleeping on her chair at the reception of the SCPA. Right now, she's surrounded by them, she says while righting a brochure holder that's been tipped over by a rambunctious grey and white kitten.
“Over the weekend we just got a load more,” the Squamish SCPA branch supervisor adds.
Currently, the facility is serving as a temporary home to 39 kittens. Last year the branch had its busiest year ever, finding homes for 321 animals and it looks as if 2013 will be no better.
It's frustrating because as much as the SPCA tries to get people to spay and neuter their animals, all of a sudden the shelter's filled with kittens, Donnelly says.
The SPCA has a policy to spay and neuter all of the animals going out of its care. For animals that are too sick or too young go through the procedure, the society books and pays for a vet appointment at a later date.
Some branches have outreach spay and neuter programs, but the Squamish facility has difficultly keeping up with its own workload, Donnelly says.
It costs the SPCA approximately $475 per cat to cover their medical bills, food and shelter once they enter the system. Dogs' bills run at roughly $485. As well as being spayed and neutered, cats and dogs are vaccinated and an identity mcirochip is place in the animals.
The shelter is always looking for foster homes to help house all the kittens and dogs that end up in the branch's care. Although there are approximately 70 people on the foster home email list, only a handful of people regularly take in animals, Donnelly told The Chief. All foster households require is a bit of time and a lot of love, she said. Program participants outline their lifestyles and the SPCA matches animals with households.
For more information on the SPCA, foster homes or adoption email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 604-898-9890.