Thursday, June 21, 2012

RECOVERING FELINES NEED WARM HOMES THIS WINTER

Weasley is one of many cats awaiting adoption at the RSPCA’s Sydney Shelter.
His mum and sister are also in need of homes.

With winter comes cold and flu season – and like people, cats get the flu too.  Staff and volunteers at the RSPCA’s Sydney Shelter in Yagoona have nursed more than 20 cats and kittens back to health and these flu-free felines are now in need of warm, comfortable homes this winter.  To ensure these cats find homes fast, the RSPCA has halved their adoption fees for a limited time. 

RSPCA NSW Sydney Shelter Manager Donna Hough said it takes much longer for cats that have been treated for cat flu to get adopted than cats that haven’t presented with flu symptoms – a few of these cats have been with the RSPCA for almost 200 days.

“People can have a negative perception about cat flu,” said Ms Hough.  “It’s a very common virus among cats, but it’s treatable.”  The best remedy is typically a combination of rest, good food and lots of TLC. 

“We do our bit to help animals recover here at the shelter, but the best thing for them would be a nice warm, permanent home.”

Cat flu is contagious and can spread between cats.  The most common way it spreads is between direct contact with other cats and sneezing.

To reduce the spread of disease at the shelter, cats that have presented with cat flu symptoms are housed separately from those that haven’t presented with symptoms.  “It’s a preventive measure, but it often means our recovering cats are overlooked or inaccurately seen as being less desirable for adoption,” said Ms Hough. 

Ms Hough said cats that have been treated for cat flu often end up healthier than cats that have never shown signs of the virus.  “Their immune systems are often stronger which means they’re better able to fight off re-infection.”   

All animals at the RSPCA are health tested prior to going up for adoption, and those recovering from flu also come with a free vet consultation at the time of adoption. 

Felines available for adoption are also desexed, microchipped, vaccinated and up to date on their flea and worm treatments.  The RSPCA is open six days, closed Wednesdays, for adoptions.  For more information, visit rspcansw.org.au  or call 9770 7555.

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