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Experts say if you see a stray kitten this season, it's greatest chance of survival is with its mom

Posted at 7:22 AM, Feb 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-25 16:12:34-05

WACO, TX — The City of Waco Animal Welfare Board is urging people to leave the kittens alone as kitten season starts in Central Texas.

Michelle Nemec, a representative on the Animal Welfare Board, says during kitten season many people with good intentions will find a stray kitten and bring it into their local shelter, but that sometimes isn't the best thing to do.

"There's just not capacity at the animal shelter for all the kittens that come in," Nemec said.

There is an 80 percent increase in kittens and cats being dropped off at the Waco shelter during peak kitten season. They usually average 75 cats or kittens a month, but during kitten season, the Waco Animal Shelter sees 137 a month.

"A lot of the kittens are still newborns or neo-natal kittens and shelter staff just can't provide that around the clock care," Nemec said.

This time of year also reminds owners the importance of spaying or neutering your pet. The Animal Birth Control clinic also has a plan to help with the strays. Offering a trap, neuter, release program you can pick up a cage at the clinic trap the stray and bring it to the clinic for surgery. After the cat is well you can then release it back to the wild.

"We'll give all the tips to help make it a really easy process too get them fixed and put back," Carrie Kuehl said, executive director for the Animal Birth Control Clinic.

So if you see a kitten in the next few months remember that its best chance of survival is with mom.

"They should leave the litter because even if mom is not around right at that moment she may be looking for food or water or she may even be moving the kittens and she will return," Nemec said.