Cats, kittens, and more cats. They are everywhere, where we live, work, and play. Some are sweet, many are shy, and all are cute–at least, to us, pet lovers. But to some, unfortunately, they are also a nuisance.
The cats of Bonifacio Global Heights (BGC) are no different. They may appear to live carefree lives as they bask in the sun on the green spaces of this commercial district, but every day is a deadly game of survival. Although many shopkeepers and visitors have come to love these BGC cats, this love does not guaranty their safety.
What if they get run over or get sick? What if no one bothers to feed them that day? What if they can’t find shelter? What if they are taken by the city pound for stray animals? What if they multiply? What will happen to the kittens?
Usually, when communities or certain members of the communities could no longer tolerate the increasing number of stray cats, they catch the cats to be euthanized or they dump them away somewhere.
Expensive and cruel, this does not solve the stray cat overpopulation. The cats left behind will breed again and the cycle continues. Even if all cats are removed, new cats from other areas will move in. Called the vacuum effect, it just causes communities to run themselves ragged with exercises in futility.
What does work is TNVR, a humane way of managing the population of stray animals. Stray cats are ‘trapped,’ usually by luring them with food then taken to a vet clinic to be spayed (females) or neutered (males). The surgery is quick, lasting only 30 minutes or less. The animals are then vaccinated against rabies and allowed to rest for two to three days, after which they are returned to where they were caught.
With TNVR, the breeding stops and rabies is eradicated.
The science is very clear on this and we wonder why more communities do not conduct TNVR.
WhenInMeownila volunteers are whiskering these cats away to a vet clinic to be neutered/spayed.
The Cats of BGC
The cats of BGC, especially along High Street have developed a following. People from all walks of life would pet and feed them. They are given names and personalities.
This BGC kitten asks for a belly rub.
A BGC cat dozes beside McDonald’s.
A BGC cat conquers. Tonight, this tree. Tomorrow, the world.
BGC angel cat
Lots of love to give
These BGC cats survive another day.
Motherhood. But what will happen to the kittens now?
How lucky you are to cross paths with this BGC cat.
Lately, though, we have noticed that the number of kittens is increasing. Either they were dumped there or the unneutered and unspayed cats are reproducing. Sadly, several kittens were sickly. Given the rains, their chances of survival are slim. We heard that a few had died already.
When in Meownila
The Philippine Pet Birth Control Center (PPBC), a non-profit with a mission to eradicate rabies and lessen animal abuse by controlling the dog and cat population through neutering, offers a solution. It will spay-neuter cats that volunteers will bring to its clinic in Mandaluyong.
Because we at WhenInManila.com are animal lovers, sharing an advocacy for animal welfare, we volunteered. One rainy morning in October, a bunch of us tried to catch us some cats. (This was done with the knowledge of BGC’s administration.)
They came willingly enough. The cats knew WIM’s Sheila Snow and the other volunteers by sight and smell.
We discovered about five kittens. They were too young for spaying, however.
Cats off to you, WhenInMeownila volunteers!
Sadly, the orange kitten became sickly a few days after the TNVR. A volunteer brought her to the vet but she did not make it.
PPBCC says “it is impossible to save and solve all the animal welfare problems but is possible to reduce them. Pet overpopulation can be managed.”
True, we only managed to neuter/spay 13 cats. A larger scale operation or several smaller ones have to be conducted to get them all. You can organize one in coordination with PPBCC. Learn about it here.
Special thanks to Art’s Pet Biya-Hero, our pet transport partner. If you need transport for your pets or rescued animals, call Art.
When in Meownila, if you have a heart for animals, please neuter or spay them. Let us not add to the problems plaguing the world.
To also conduct TNVR in your area, you only need to contact PPBCC to make that happen.
Philippine Pet Birth Control Center
155 Boni Ave Barangay Plainview
Tel +632 949 5941
Do you follow the cats of BGC? Take pictures and share them with us!
The cats of BGC are still out on the streets, however. To adopt a cat or two, contact the volunteers of Cats of BGC.
Photos were taken by the volunteers of Cats of BGC.