Cat colonies may not be very common in Sweden, but all the more so elsewhere in the world. There are several reasons why cats start living together on the streets, but it is mainly due to a lack of neutering and abandonment of pets. One of the things you can do to help a cat colony is to feed it, of course in addition to neutering the animals in it.
How to feed a cat colony properly
It has been proven that an effective way to control the size of a colony of cats is to neuter the animals so that no new ones are born. Moving the cats to another location will only lead to a new one moving in.
However, feeding the cats is not enough, because they also need veterinary care and neutering. You should also inform your neighbors that you intend to feed them.
You have to feed them in a way that takes into account both the cats and the neighbors. Start by keeping the following in mind:
The problem with homemade food
You should never give stray cats homemade food. There are several reasons why leftovers and the like are not good for them. The first is that it is simply not healthy for them. Cats are carnivores and human food contains a lot of grains (such as rice or pasta), vegetables (peppers, tomatoes, carrots, zucchini, onions, etc.) and legumes (lentils, chickpeas, beans…), as well as oil, salt and other spices .
Another reason is that homemade food makes the street dirty, smells bad and attracts insects and other small animals. Cats will not be the only ones eating; Insects and other animals will also try to partake of it, which can be largely avoided if you choose other foods.
How to feed a cat colony: food and water
As I said, keep the cats’ health and the cleanliness of the area in mind by giving them cat food. It is dry, so it will not smell bad and will not leave grease or residue behind. It also does not attract insects and other pests, such as rats, because they do not like it. It is also easy to clean.
There are a number of different qualities and prices to choose from, so choose one that is useful and fits your budget.
To feed a cat colony on a regular basis, you do not need to get into debt. Maybe there are shelters that can help you or you can start a fundraiser.
Also, do not forget that cats must have access to fresh water. They must especially drink if they eat dry food, so be sure to bring water with you and change it once a day – do not just fill the bowl when it is empty.
Cleaning is important
Keeping the cat colony clean is important. This prevents pests from spreading, rubbish from accumulating and odors from forming. Of course, it also improves the cats’ quality of life. They are pure animals, and even though they live on the streets, they want to live without dirt and bad smells. It also reduces health problems and infections.
Finally, do not forget the neighbors. Many people do not like to live near cat colonies, so you need to show them that the area is clean and that the cats are healthy.
To do this, avoid placing food on the ground, and if you use disposable containers, discard the unused ones.
However, the best thing for the environment is to use dishes and bowls that you can use repeatedly. You can take them home and clean them so that the colony itself is not littered.
It is important to remember that pet food should not be seen or accessible to others. It can be stolen, eaten by other animals or even poisoned. Make sure food and water are in a place known only to cats.
Feeding a cat colony is the first step towards helping stray cats. However, that is not the only thing. They also need veterinary care, and above all they must be neutered to prevent the colony from growing.