PawsWatch feral cat feeding station smashed

Posted 1/14/20

By KAREN KALUNIAN Recently, a local feral cat feeding station was ransacked and overturned. For the folks of PawsWatch the discovery was devastating. PawsWatch is a local all volunteer non-profit whose work includes providing shelter and food for local

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PawsWatch feral cat feeding station smashed


Recently, a local feral cat feeding station was ransacked and overturned.

For the folks of PawsWatch the discovery was devastating. PawsWatch is a local all volunteer non-profit whose work includes providing shelter and food for local feral cat colonies. Several times a week the volunteers visit these undisclosed locations and replenish food and check on the shelters that they provide. Last week the site of one of their cat shelters being found almost completely destroyed was heartbreaking. Martine Ireland, a PawsWatch volunteer said, "We want the public to know that the volunteers make it their mission to keep these cats fed and safe." She added "Community cats are beneficial to our areas as they keep the mice and rat population down but only if they are well managed. Destroying their homes is detrimental to their livelihood." 

The volunteers who found the destruction called Warwick Police to file a report and make them aware of the territory. They then had to scale down the embankment with ropes to retrieve pieces of the shelter that were pushed over the edge. Once they were able to lift all of the sections up to the top of the hill, they reassembled them and prepared the station once again. Their hope is that no one will destroy it a second time and realize that this colony of cats has become dependent on this shelter and feeding station. 

PawsWatch mission is TNR (trap, neuter, release) for the Rhode Island feral cat population but they also add in a "M" to the description, which stands for (maintained, managed, monitored) according to Ireland. Sites scattered throughout Rhode Island are monitored by volunteers who make it a weekly priority to manage them to ensure these animals are provided for. The food, supplies and handcrafted shelters are all donated to Pawswatch and the volunteers dedicate their time as well. If you would like to help or donate to PawsWatch visit their website for more information at


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If this wasn't done by your average vandals just wanting to haphazardly destroy something, it may have been deliberately done by someone who thinks that cats shouldn't be allowed outside because they kill other creatures like birds.

I've heard this opinion more than once. It's unfortunate.

My thanks to all the good people who are doing their best to help these feral cats.

I'm glad you're rebuilding, undaunted by this crime.

My best wishes for your success!

Wednesday, January 15

Feral cats don't need "help"; besides sterilization, they need euthanization if infected with feline leukemia, feline AIDS or other communicable diseases.

"Community cats" my a**.

Thursday, January 16

RISchadenfreude, they are not all feral cats. Many cats people see outside were dumped by their "owners" and left to fend for themselves. PawsWatch doesn't just TNR (trap/neuter/return) but also tests the cats so there should not be any cats with communicable diseases returned outdoors. If positive, they are placed with shelters/rescues to help them get adopted. If truly feral and positive, well, that is another issue.

If people actually took responsibility for their animals and cared for them as they should the number of community cats wouldn't be as bad as it is, but they don't. Plain and simple. I cannot tell you how many cats I have seen trapped that were very friendly and were adopted to live a safe life. Even one that was positive for feline leukemia, had one eye, and about 4 teeth. Living a very happy life in a place that will love her until her day eventually comes. Keeping cats indoors is the best way to protect them not only from other cats but also from people that simply don't care for cats - like the individual(s) who trashed this feeding station. Not to mention other predators such as coyotes, Fisher cats, etc.

Euthanizing is not the answer. Many studies have shown that if the cats are removed and euthanized it will only open the area for more people to dump their cat. It is called The Vacuum Effect. What we need, as a community, is to be responsible for our own animals, dogs and cats alike. Pets should all be fixed, vaccinated, and tested. They should not be allowed to roam outdoors, they have been domesticated. If someone decides they want a pet they need to follow through on proper care. People that can't/won't take proper medical care and precautions should never have a pet.

Thursday, January 16