Every year, thousands of felines meet an unfortunate fate in animal shelters around the country. The recent recession has resulted in many families having to abandon or surrender their furry companions to so-called “no kill” animal service agencies, mostly government funded, whose solution to feline overpopulation is simple: hand over to animal control agencies for euthanization. While considered painless, it is a sad ending for many cats which simply never get a shot at a happy life with a family.
Despite the overpopulation problem, many not-for-profit organizations do exist, and abide by the “no kill” credo. One of these is called Placing Misplaced Pets (PMP), a no-kill, all volunteer group in Pasco County, Florida. This group is dedicated to providing happy, no-kill endings for homeless pets, or pets in distressed situations.
At an event held at the Pet Supplies Plus location in Port Richey, Florida this weekend, PMP featured several animals, including a Ragdoll cat named Malcolm Simon. Don’t be fooled by the cage; Malcolm is well-cared-for, affectionate and gentle. He is a classic Ragdoll with stunning blue eyes. According to one of the volunteers, Pasco County simply doesn’t give cats the same level of respect they give dogs.
“Dogs are treated so much better,” the volunteer said of Pasco Countys attitude towards dogs versus cats.
In Malcolm’s case, he’s described on PMP’s website as “up-to-date on vaccines, neutered, dewormed and flea treated, as well as recently groomed. He gets along with both cats and small dogs. He will even lay with you and give you kisses.”
A 2-year-old male, Malcolm is touted as being a family cat. As the website states, “This guy will surely steal your heart.” The volunteers at this event stated that Animal Services considered Malcolm unadoptable.
According the group’s website, PMP works with socializing animals which Animal Services consider “unadoptable.” The website also displays “happy endings,” success stories of animals in need which find loving, forever homes. The volunteer stated they even keep a small amount of food in their personal vehicle to help feed hungry feral cats they may encounter along the way. As a general rule, Pasco County treats cats on a “catch as catch can” basis, with private citizens responsible for laying out traps to capture feral cats considered a nuisance. These animals are then “surrendered” at the Pasco County Animal Services office in Land O’ Lakes, and are almost always euthanized. According to the volunteer, this lack of oversight creates the potential for tragic endings.