July 19th, 2018

Kitten population spikes at SPCA after winter months

By Mo Cranker on April 25, 2017.

Medicine Hat SPCA executive director Katie Ayres plays with kittens Finnegan and Quinn Monday afternoon at the shelter. She says the SPCA receives a large influx of kittens between April and November.--NEWS PHOTO MO CRANKER


Kitten season has hit the Medicine Hat SPCA with a bang this year, says executive director Katie Ayres.

“From April to November every year we generally see a large spike in kitten surrenders,” she said. “Right now we have just gotten eight different litters of kittens brought to us — which is about 30 kittens. This kitten season has definitely started off really busy for us.”

Ayres says the large influx of kittens is due to cats preferring to mate once the weather begins to warm after the cold winter months.

“From December up until a few weeks ago we hadn’t seen any kittens,” she said. “There’s a few months in the year where cats do not want to mate. Those months are when we really try to push our low cost spay and neuter program.”

Ayres says the low-cost program charges people $80-150 per spay or neuter depending on the person’s income, which is substantially cheaper than going any other route.

“Our spay and neuter program costs two or three times less than elsewhere I would say,” said Ayres. “If people want, and can take care of a litter of kittens that is great. There is an overpopulation of cats right now and spaying and neutering pets is the obvious solution.”

The cost to adopt a kitten from the SPCA is $145, and the eight litters the shelter has received recently will slowly be put up for adoption over the next few weeks says Ayres.

“All animals we take in we spay and neuter,” said Ayres. “We end up charging less than the process costs us, not to mention microchipping, de-worming and feeding the animals.”

Ayres says the influx of kittens means the SPCA will be looking for help in the way of kitten food donations.


The SPCA will be hosting its annual walking and jogging event on May 13, under the name of the Superhero Fun Run and Walk.

It will be the 25th consecutive year the SPCA will hold this event, and it is encouraging people and their pets to be dressed up as superheroes for the event.

“We just want people to come out and have some fun,” said Ayres. “We have a very full day of activities for people of all ages. From the walk, to a best dressed contest, all the way to kids crafts with their pets.”

More information on the SPCA and its fundraising events can be found on its website, http://www.medhatspca.ca.

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