This is Kevin the Kitten aka Agent K:
Last week Kevin joined the 60,000 club – an unenviable membership – as he became one of the estimated 60,000 cats and dogs abandoned each summer in France at the beginning of the holiday season. Kevin, who’s about two months old and has obviously been brought up in a house, probably with children as he’s quite used to being handled and cuddles up to you, was dumped on the side of a road in the forest near Villandraut.
Luckily for Kevin my daughter was taking her dog for a walk and heard him mewing. It was well over a kilometre to the nearest house, far too far for a kitten of that age to go so he can’t have strayed from home and in any case we plastered the area with posters and no one has rung to claim him.
People who live in the forest are used to people just dumping their animals there – when we lived there our neighbours even rescued a hamster from the undergrowth – usually it’s elderly dogs whose owners don’t want to pay for vets bills or to have them put down but abandoning kittens is also common, there’s an assumption that they’ll be able to look after themselves. Not at Kevin’s age they don’t, he’s a domestic kitten, not feral, besides he’s far too young to know how to hunt for himself and he’d probably have been supper for a fox or a buzzard within a couple of days. The vet who looked to see if Kevin had a chip said he’d probably only been there for a day, if that, as he was still in very good condition.
I’m not going to express my opinion of the person who dumped Kevin – the words would scorch even an electronic page – all I can say is that I hope there’s a special and very painful corner of Hell reserved for all those who see animals as disposable. But I will ask this, If you can’t be bothered to look after your animals’ progeny properly why don’t you get them sterilised? The sad truth is that it’s cheaper to leave your unwanted puppies and kittens by the wayside like fast food wrapping than take them to the vet for an op. And so people like us who do get our pets seen to are usually the ones who pick up the pieces. If we took Kevin to the SPCA he’ll probably be put down almost immediately, they’re overrun at this time of year and it’s always difficult to rehome black animals in France, they’re regarded as being unlucky. So it looks like that unless we can find a home for him he’ll end up here. He’s absolutely enchanting but we’ve already got two cats, one of whom was rescued in similar circs from a woodpile and who is going into a deep depression over this energetic little intruder.
Would anyone like a kitten? Delightful, housetrained, purrs a lot, will do anything for cheese, used to dogs, Bordeaux area…
fly in the web said:
There’s a big campaign in Costa Rica to spay and neuter…mostly run by local charity groups…and it has reduced the number of strays but by nowhere near enough.
We have already acquired three strays who turned up at the house and asked to have a tiny puppy in a bad way – property of a wealthy lady – as well as our own dog.
But at least you don’t hear of animals thrown from cars.
My daughter met someone the other day who was working in his garden when a Labrador puppy appeared. The gate was shut, the garden is completely enclosed, the only thing that could have happened is that someone decided to dump the puppy in the garden. It was good timing as one of his dogs had just died so there was a vacancy.
I get very hot under the collar about people who refuse to have their pets seen to – ‘oh, all females need to givve birth at least once.’ I don’t see anyone saying that to middle aged women who have elected not to have children…
Friends have 33 cats, almost all having been dumped on their property. The way animals are treated makes me think man is going backwards on the evolutionary scale. Many French seem strongly against neutering on the grounds that it is “unnatural”, abandoning unwanted pets and litters to starve or worse as an acceptable solution. It also seems to me that vets could do their share by reducing their fees for neutering, maybe even a Government sponsored initiative to subsidise neutering. And what about people who continue breeding from their pets, when there are already hundreds of thousands of animals in need of homes. I am in despair.
Victoria, if you haven’t done so, would you consider signing the petition to the UK Government to abolish Breed Specific Legislation, which has just allowed an innocent family pet to be killed by Belfast City Council despite an international outcry, and which will see the death of many more dogs purely based on their appearance, not on their behaviour? This is causing unimaginable distress to owners, not to mention misery to their dogs. If you are not aware of the story, please Google “Lennox” to read about a terrible miscarriage of justice, of perjury, lies and contempt.
If you’d like a link to the petition, please email me at doolally dot tap at gmail dot com.
PS Kevin is adorable, what a little charmer, and how lucky to be found by you. 🙂
Email on its way to you though I have to say I’ve had severe doubts about the efficacy of any type of public protest since Mr Blair’s reaction to the protests agaisnt the war in Iraq.
fly in the web said:
Suggest we neuter anyone refusing to neuter their animal…..
Unfortunately, this is so commmon. At the end of the holiday season (and even in the middle) people’s rejects wander about disconsolately and some get squashed on the autoroutes on which they’ve been dumped. Some communes around here have a programme of spaying, vaccinating, chipping etc but it’s a drop in the ocean.
P.S. I am a middle-aged female who made a conscious decision not to have children.
Your post made me pause a moment and remember our cat Patsy who fell prey to another dark side of France concerning cats – she was shot by hunters. I say “our” cat, but she adopted us one summer after a dramatic event in our village meant one family’s cats scattered to the four winds. She was a tiny marmalade kitten and as she grew up she became not only very affectionate but apparently convinced she was a dog. She would come with us for lengthy walks, bounding along and playing all the way for hours. We still miss her and curse the heartless cruelty of the weekend gunslingers.
We have friends who reckon their Siamese cat was killed by hunters. Luckily there’s no hunting around the house appart from an organised battu two or three times a year.
Lucy Rock (@LiteraryRelish) said:
I suppose posting him over to Manchester wouldn’t be an option……? 🙂
The dogs have got the box and a roll of sellotape out already…
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