A cat shelter in Surrey is struggling to keep up with the demand they are seeing in the number of animals needing support, which has reached record levels.
Surrey Community Cat Foundation is a volunteer-run organization that helps cat owners access spay and neuter procedures for their pets when the can’t afford the surgery on their own.
The foundation struggled to keep up with the demand during the COVID-19 pandemic, but the numbers have not let up yet.
“We’re expected to reach nearly 600 cats by the end of the year,” Lubna Ekramoddoullah, program manager at SurreyCats, said in a news release.
“We helped spay and neuter 40 cats in November, and we’ve already processed 70 applications for December. We’re expecting an additional 30-40 applications to come over the course of the month.”
SurreyCats has seen a 25 per cent increase in the number of requests in 2022, and a whopping 75 per cent increase since the pandemic was declared early in 2020.
The organization has had to put “several” applications on the back burner, however, as their funding does not fully equip the volunteers to serve the number of people who turn to them.
“It’s been another difficult year. We’re still seeing effects of the pandemic, which continues to be hard on both the people and the animals in our community… Animals are suffering. We want to ease their burden,” Ekramoddoullah said.
The cat foundation also runs a cat-food bank for owners struggling financially, but also for feeding strays around the city.
“We receive frequent requests for cat food, but we don’t have any to give right now… Starving cats are at a higher risk for illness and death… That’s why we’re also asking the public to help with our food bank by donating cat food,” Ekramoddoullah said.
Donations of cat food can be dropped off at four different locations in Surrey: Pet Food Solutions Supermarket (10602 King George Blvd. or 6447 120 St.), Fraser Heights Animal Hospital and Guildford Pet Supplies (15575 104 Ave), Pet Food ‘N More (7380 King George Blvd.) or in South Surrey at Mother Hubbard’s Pet Food & Supplies (1812 152 St.)
Monetary donations to SurreyCats in December will be matched by two anonymous donors – up to $8,000. More information is available at surreycats.ca/donatemoney