Since returning from a trip to Cambrils two weeks ago, I have some received some really shocking news. In nearby Tarragona, many street cats have been found tortured in the most barbaric ways. I cannot describe how awful the photos were but I will spare you them. I was in two minds whether to even pass on this horrible news as I don’t want people to be put off reading the website. I know what it is like to be deluged with disgusting images of animal cruelty and it can become very depressing and draining…but it happens. I am loathe to describe the injuries but I will say that bags were found nearby containing pellet guns, knives, screwdrivers etc. We are dealing with psychotic people here and it happened on several occasions over a number of days. It is incomprehensible that they could inflict injuries on harmless creatures….absolutely heartbreaking.
I had been anxious about the cats in Tarragona on this last trip as they seemed to be increasing in numbers with lots more pregnant cats and kittens. I fed one very young cat who had a damaged eye, (now I am more suspicious about her injury.) She was trying to bring up four little kittens and they didn’t have any food….she kept crying until I got her some food. I expect someone must have been feeding them but this is the problem, limited food and hardly any neutering. It was the same story everywhere I went.
This horrific news was sent to me by new friends in Cambrils who I had the pleasure to meet recently and who are doing wonderful things there in bringing positivity and vitality to remedy the ongoing plight of the street cats. I was so relieved when they contacted me just before my trip as I always knew there were people who cared about the street animals but I could not find them. They have formed a new group called Progat Cambrils which I am very happy to be associated with. Raquel has been busy speaking to the Town Hall , speaking on the radio and writing articles and I met Marianela for the first time as well as Sagrario who I had already found on a previous trip!
They have said they will help with trapping and neutering some of the cats that I am worried about in Cambrils but I have promised to supply the money so I need to start to seriously think about fund-raising ideas. There is one colony in particular at the boatyard where more cats need to be neutered urgently. I sterilised some before but the matriarch there has given birth again-she had been having some sort of birth control but it had obviously failed which is a disaster. Also, one ginger who I didn’t manage to catch last time, and had hoped was a male, was a female and has had five kittens since I was there last, all of whom will be ready for neutering very very soon. I just hope I can raise the money in time then it should be a safe, healthy, stable group, as they are away from all the others, almost on an island.
As the local authorities are still insisting that cats cannot be fed in the street, some people are still worried that they will get in trouble for doing so. Because of this, Luigi has moved three of his cats to a place out of Cambrils. He took me to see them-they are being fed by a kind lady who lives there amongst the orange trees with three other recently abandoned cats but it is a shame that he felt he had to relocate them as it does not solve the issue. One of the cats is Ghia, who I rescued from a roof with her siblings a couple of years ago. I have said that I will pay to neuter the other cats who were dumped on the woman feeding them otherwise there will be a problem.
We are going to move Mama Cat to live with Victor’s family soon-it is a pity in a way as she has lived by the Bodega for about 6 years but I was very happy that they agreed as she should be safer. She will be living with two other cats and a dog so it will be a challenge for her at first!
There are some areas of Catalonia where sympathetic councils allow feeding posts for cats and this always works very successfully. It is just a matter of convincing the relevant authorities but this proves almost impossible. If only they would realise that the feeders don’t stop feeding neither do concerned tourists and passers-by so it is infinitely preferable and indeed much more hygienic to have authorised feeding locations. The cats can be monitored more easily and any health issues solved more quickly. There really is no good reason not to do it but they take a lot of convincing.
As usual, please feel free to contact me via firstname.lastname@example.org with any queries or suggestions. Feedback is always welcome.
Below is a link to the article by Global Defensa Gats (in Spanish) which describes the incidents which took place in Tarragona.
Warning: the GDG article contains several harrowing images of the tortured street cats