Working in France for the health and wellbeing of cats & kittens
“Les amis des chats” has just celebrated its tenth anniversary. Since this cat welfare charity was founded in Roquecor, Tarn-et-Garonne in March 2000 it has helped over 5,000 cats, and plans to help even more in the years to come.
It began by starting a “Trap-Neuter-Return” programme in its home village of Roquecor, the charity has expanded so that today it has “arretés” allowing TNR programmes in more than 40 villages, and helps cats over a wide area.
“Trap-Neuter-Return” (TNR) programmes help stray and homeless cats. When stray cats live in colonies, the fighting and mating can spread diseases. The male cats spray to mark their territory, the females can produce kittens more than once a year, and almost all the cats live only a very few years, and could be ill much of their short lives.
But if the healthy strays in a colony are neutered and returned to their home, they fight a lot less, they obviously don’t mate, and the spread of disease is cut dramatically. The colony protects its territory so that the population stabilises, the males spray very little, and the difference is remarkable.
That’s what happened in Roquecor. Before LADC was founded the centre of the village was home to a colony of strays. There were sick cats wandering the main street, the male cats sprayed, and you can imagine some of the other problems residents – and visitors – met regularly.
Ten years later, these problems are long forgotten. The cats you see in the village may be strays or pets – but they are healthy. They live much longer, and it’s a delightful village to live in or to visit.
The charity has worked the same “miracle” in many other villages, and seeing the results, local attitudes to sterilising cats, particularly females, has changed dramatically.
Sterilising a cat, particularly a female, can be expensive, and “Les amis des chats” aims to help those on limited incomes by offering “Bons de St‚rilisation” which pay the vet part of the cost of the operation. As a result many hundreds of pets have been sterilised, cutting the number of unwanted kittens produced each year.
But of course some cats and kittens are still abandoned. “Les amis des chats” has a team of volunteers who provide temporary homes for these unfortunates while we look for a permanent family for them.
All this takes a lot of money and a lot of work. The charity is run by a team of volunteers who man its two small charity shops in Beauville And Roquecor, run the TNR programmes, care for kittens, issue “Bons” and raise the funds that these programmes depend on.
We are helped in this by “The Blue Cross” and RSPCA International. 30 Millions d’Amis and Le Fondation Brigitee Bardot have also helped us over the years.
If you’d like to join them in helping us by becoming a member or with a donation, unwanted items for our shops to sell or just good wishes, please e-mail us at:
or visit our web site at www.les-amis-des-chats.com where you’ll find much more information about what we do, details of our coming events, fact sheets on how to care for your cat or kitten, and a lot more.
Our aim is to help all cats live a happy, healthy life.
© Les Amis Des Chats 2010