New homes desperately sought for hundreds of abandoned cats
Cat fosterers swamped with hundreds of moggies are desperately seeking purr-fect homes for their feline friends.
Hundreds of cats and kittens have been taken in by temporary carers across Lincolnshire after being made homeless or abandoned.
And sanctuaries are now so full that there is little room for new arrivals.
Reasons for the boom in abandonments include people moving to private rented accommodation who cannot take their pets with them, or simply not wanting their cats any more.
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There have also been delays in people taking in new moggies until their return from summer holidays.
Karen Ansell, chairman of the RSPCA Lincolnshire Mid and Lincoln Branch, and fosterer, has 76 cats in her care of which 30 are kittens.
"We get to this point at this time every year and I believe it's the same for everyone else involved in cat fostering and re-homing locally," said Mrs Ansell, who lives in North Hykeham.
"Another of our fosterers has 30 cats and kittens. At the moment, we cannot take any more until we start to re-home.
"It seems to me, yet again, that no one wants to neuter them and people don't realise that if you don't it's the start of a slippery slope in terms of being overrun.
"We ask people for just £40 to microchip and neuter a cat they want to rehome.
"At Christmas there will be people saying they don't really want their old cats any more who want a younger one, so the cycle begins again.
"It's always the black or black and white cats that stay with us the longest. They are the last to go after the gingers, the tabbies and the tortoiseshells.
"We have cases where a cat is brought in because a new partner is allergic to cats.
"There are also the strays in the street, and we have one who was found dumped in the woods and was being eaten alive by fleas."
Rescue organisation Lincoln Cat Care is among those which are stretched to the limit.
Its website states: "The number of calls and e-mails we are receiving from people wanting cats and kittens brought into care is escalating almost by the day."
Lucy Avery, who runs Cats in Crisis, in Lincoln, said: "We are full, with a cat in the vets waiting to come into care and nowhere to put her.
"It is a very sad situation to be in and seems to be getting worse."
To give a cat a home, call:
Karen Ansell: 01522 889372
Lincoln Cat Care: 01522 306195/796089
Cats in Crisis: 01522 522311
Cats Protection: 01522 524698
Lincolnshire Trust for Cats: 01673 844628