Even though there is a global overpopulation of cats overall, Himalayan cats are expensive to buy. A quick online search shows this popular breed of cat can cost upwards of $1,000.
The price tag on these animals made it all the more shocking when over THIRTY Himalayan cats were found abandoned in a park near Wheaton, Maryland.
Thankfully, the cats were rescued by volunteers from the Montgomery County Community Cat Coalition.
The cats were scared and malnourished, and ranged in age from 4 months to 7 years. Tragically, several of the cats died of feline distemper, a disease that could have been prevented by a routine vaccination.
In Maryland it is illegal to abandon domesticated animals in a public or private place, but the penalty is far too low: $100 or less. Police investigated, but the person who abandoned the cats was not found.
It is selfish and wrong to breed cats while millions of healthy, wonderful, adoptable cats are dying outdoors or being killed in shelters every year for lack of homes.
So if you know someone who is thinking about buying a fancy cat, please tell them to visit their local shelter and adopt, don't shop!
Not only that, breeding cats for appearance, such as flat faces, small size, or unusual fur can cause a range of health problems for the individual cat. Deliberately bringing sickly animals into the world is not a kind way to treat animals!
For example, compared to other cats, Himalayans are more susceptible to Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome, Polycystic Kidney Disease, and Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy.
Kitten mills and backyard breeders
The rescuers of the abandoned Himalayan cats in Maryland suspect that the cats were abandoned by a backyard breeder. But in addition, while not as common as puppy mills, there are "kitten mills" which focus solely on profit. Cats in such facilities are typically housed in poor conditions, receive little to no veterinary care, and are bred as frequently as possible, leading to a range of health and behavioral problems.
The Cat Overpopulation Crisis in the U.S.
According to most estimates, tens of millions of stray and feral cats roam the United States alone. Breeding more cats adds to this population, increasing the number of cats in need of homes.
For decades, the overpopulation of cats has led many shelters to resort to killing animals they can't care for or place in homes. According to some estimates, approximately 1.4 million cats are put to death in U.S. shelters each year. Due to the increasing acceptance of spaying and neutering, this number has been decreasing, but it is unacceptable that cats are still being killed simply for being homeless.
Cats need to be spayed or neutered — not bred!
The Worldwide Cat Overpopulation Crisis: A Long-Term Solution
Worldwide, overpopulation is the #1 cause of suffering and death for cats.
That’s why 600 Million Dogs is working on a humane, permanent solution. Our nonprofit science-centered mission is to significantly reduce animal suffering on a global scale by developing a safe, edible, one-dose, permanent-lasting birth control Cookie for stray dogs and cats! When completed, it will, in effect, spay and neuter without surgery!
Thank you for caring about animals!