Wednesday, 15 July 2015

My first Cats Protection AGM

This year, the Cats Protection AGM was held in Knutsford at the Cottons Hotel on Saturday 11th July.  Our branch co-ordinator Mary Keenan, neutering officer Dot Nuttall, fosterer Barbara Larner and myself were all able to attend and had a fantastic day, with lots of like-minded people!

Fundraising stand
Registration was from 10.15, with lovely refreshments available and exhibition stands set up to explore.  There were members of staff and lots of information about many sectors of the charity - Veterinary, Fundraising, Volunteering, Branch Support Unit, Legal, Property, Training and Development and more.  This gave us a great opportunity to chat and ask some questions with the aim of improving our branch and the work that we do for cats. 

Veterinary stand with essential guides - find them all at:

To kick off proceedings, the Chair of Trustees Heather McCann presented her report, followed by the Chief Executive Peter Hepburn.  Two very interesting and informative presentations about progress and goings on in 2014 provided me with some great facts and figures to publish:

In 2014, Cats Protection...
  • helped over 205,000 cats through the national network of over 250 volunteer-run branches and 31 adoption centres - an average of more than 550 cats a day!  This includes neutering, rehoming and reuniting. 
  • helped to neuter 163,000 cats and kittens, including 28,000 ferals
  • rehomed 45,000 cats and kittens
  • reached over 16,000 people through education talks
  • registered more than 800 people for the Cat Guardians Service
  • celebrated 10 years of The Freedom Project, in partnership with Dogs Trust, helping take care of pets from families experiencing domestic abuse
  • received interaction through social media from nearly 280,000 people!

We were also advised of the updated strategic aims of the charity: 
  1. To significantly increase awareness of Cats Protection and our work
  2. As the leading authority on cats, CP will help people better understand their needs in order to improve the welfare of all cats
  3. Help to reduce the overpopulation of cats
    1. through targeted neutering campaigns and education
    2. directing more resources to the promotion of early neutering
    3. do more research and gathering better data on the impact of our neutering work
  4. To home more cats until our work on information, education and neutering reduces the long-term need for homing
After a lunch break Dr Maggie Roberts, Director of Veterinary Services, presented her talk entitled "Why does my cat do that", answering those widely asked questions such as "why does my cat wake me up at 4am?", "why does my cat hunt and bring it in the house even though I feed him?" and "why does my cat drink from a puddle rather than his bowl??".  You can find out the background to the answers of these questions by completing an E-learning resource - Understanding Feline Origins.

To finish the presentations, David Newall, Director of Operations, spoke about plans for the future of Cats Protection, which sound very exciting for us as volunteers and staff members as well as the number of cats we will be able to help. 

Later on that afternoon we visited the new Warrington Adoption Centre by a coach trip.  The brand new centre opened in November 2013 after staff and cats were left with dampened spirits after the site suffered with frequent episodes of flooding. 

New Warrington Adoption Centre, opened November 2013
Homing pens at Warrington AC

We were taken on a guided tour by one of the very friendly and informative Cat Care Assistants who showed us around the bright spacious reception area, the carefully managed isolation area, the delightful maternity wing and the bright and comfortable homing and admissions areas.  We were very impressed with the whole centre, having brand new facilities including a veterinary treatment room, meet and greet room, interview room and most importantly of all fantastic pens and facilities for the cats. 

The pens were all very nicely kitted out, featuring the feline forts in every one.  See below for the theory and my photos of them in action at Warrington!  

Taken from Feline Fort: Information for Vets, Cats Protection

Feline Fort in use in the maternity wing

Ocean using his high viewpoint on top of the hide

We all definitely had an enjoyable and enlightening day and will look forward to the next AGM. In the meantime, it's back to looking after all our cats and kittens we have with our fosterers.  If you would like to take a look at who we have in our care at the moment and lots of other cats looking for new homes please see our website.

Thanks for reading :) 

Friday, 3 July 2015

National Campaign for Mature Moggies

On 10th July the National Cat Centre for Cats Protection is running a campaign to raise awareness of the senior cats in our care all over the country.

We are now right in the middle of kitten season, which usually spans from April until September. While these delightful, cute bundles of fluff are bouncing around it is common for the older cats to fade into the background to potential adopters. 

According to Cats Protection figures, on average, older cats take around five times longer than kittens to be adopted.  During kitten season, that time increases to, on average, six and a half times longer!

Tom and Chris, two adorable brothers
We believe older cats should not be overlooked in favour of their younger, cuter counterparts.  Tom and Chris have been in our care since early May as their owner was emigrating.  They are very attractive boys, both in great health.  Just because they are now 9 years old does not mean they have any less character or any less love to give. See Tom and Chris' page here

Older cats tend to stay closer to home so make great companions, their characters are fully formed so you know what sort of cat you’re getting and they’re less likely to scale the curtains!

Ash is a lovely 15 year old male looking for a new home since his owner passed away.  We are featuring him on our website as a private homing arrangement as unfortunately we do not have any spaces with our fosterers due to the number of kittens around at the moment. If you know of an older person who would like a feline companion please mention Ash as he is looking for a fur-ever with someone he can love, who will be loved in return - see Ash's page here.

Though all our fosterers at Colwyn & District Cats Protection look after all the cats in their care very well, life in a pen is no substitute for a permanent home so I would urge people to consider adopting an older cat. 

To find out more about caring for a mature cat, please see the official Cats Protection Guidance Leaflet. This is a very good resource advising about veterinary and everyday care, age related health issues and how to provide the ideal home for an elderly cat. 

If you are interested in adopting an mature cat, or know someone who would benefit from their companionship, then please go to our website to see the cats we have in care and also those looking for new homes through private/direct homing, thank you.