Charity founder speaks out on Estepona’s stray cat controversy

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Flickr by Jonathan Leung

THE proliferation of stray cat communities in Estepona is causing concern amongst residents and animal rights associations.
The Asociacion Gatos y Amigos (Cats and Friends Association) is currently inundated with animals and said they had not been able to find shelter for them.
“There are many cats in the streets and this issue is not being met with solutions. We need a municipal refuge where animals can stay while we find them a family,” said Michelle Chown, founder of the association. “Currently, there are only five families giving shelter to stray cats, and they cannot have more than two or three cats at the same home because frequently, they do not get along. We need more families to volunteer.”
Ms Chown explained that she constantly receives calls from residents alerting her that a new stray cat group has appeared in the area, but they do not have the means to help by themselves.
In total, there are 50 affiliates who feed, sterilise and find a home for the cats, all funded with their own money or through fundraising.
The founder also criticised the fact that this voluntary activity not only was not encouraged, but could result in fines of up to €300 for those seen feeding stray cats.

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