With a demented cat killer, or killers, still on the loose in Maple Ridge, there are ways to keep your beloved feline safe from human predators.
“It’s horrific,” Maple Ridge SPCA branch manager Mark Vosper said. “It’s scary for pet owners and the animals alike. Who in their right mind would want to mutilate animals?”
To keep your felines out of nefarious hands, Vosper has this advice: Try to keep your outdoor cat indoors.
This won’t be easy, however, Vosper said owners can re-train their cats by offering them more stimulation inside their home.
“We know that’s going to be challenge, but the enrichment idea keeps the cat enclosed in a space,” Vosper said.
Swinging toys, or any unusual toy or item that will keep a cat interested will provide enough enrichment to keep it from wanting to head outside.
Also, Vosper urges people to be vigilant and watch for any suspicious activity.
If you see someone who you suspect wouldn’t normally be around cats, trying to lure one of them with a toy or a treat, make a note of their vehicle description and call the RCMP or SPCA, Vosper said.
There are currently 40 cats either at the shelter, or living with families through the local SPCA’s foster program.
If you have a room that you can dedicate to your cat, change it around each day with new enrichment toys, Vosper said.
A tissue box containing a couple of small ping pong balls and a handful of treats will challenge the feline to fish them out with its claws, he noted.
Even an item as simple as a couple of feathers tied to a stick or a wand will keep a cat busy, while satisfying its predatory instincts.
“There’s lots of different websites in which you can get enrichment ideas for cats and other animals,” Vosper explained.
The recent rash of cat killings is being handled by the SPCA’s cruelty investigation department but the local shelter has been fielding calls from concerned pet owners, Vosper noted.