Retired couple in cat rescue
Saturday, 12th December, 2020
By Annette Northey
A compassionate retired Broken Hill couple have gone above and beyond to help address the city’s stray cat problem by establishing a cat rescue on their premises, funded from their own pockets.
Christine and Ray Grenfell, both retired, agreed to take on some cats and kittens to help out local veterinarian Guillaume ‘Tabby’ Tabuteau when he ceased operation of his animal pound.
“People were trying to find where to take cats and kittens and he asked if we’d do it, so we ended up starting a rescue,” Christine said.
“We’ve got 52 at the moment - we didn’t expect to be bombarded.”
Christine and Ray half-enclosed a verandah to house the felines and pay for everything themselves, including food, litter, bedding/towels, immunisation, desexing and microchipping.
The cats have plenty of space to roam around in somewhat of a cat paradise that Christine and Ray have set up for them, including a small garden with rocks and plants where the cats have access to a natural setting.
The Grenfells take cats from any age - from newborns to older cats.
“If they’re pink little things I rear them,” Christine said.
“If we get mothers with babies we’re lucky, and when they come off the teat we either find a home for the mothers or some even go back to where they came from, but without the kittens,” Christine said.
“People will often bring a mother and kittens over just after birth.”
“We put them in a special cage because we don’t want them intermixing with the others while they’ve got babies.
“Then, when they’re old enough we find forever homes for the kittens,” she said.
“They find it hard to find homes for the bigger cats because most people want kittens.”
Christine said even though a cat can be a great companion pet for elderly people, older folks are reluctant to take them on for fear of leaving them without a home if something were to happen to them.
“But those people can be reassured in knowing that if they would like to get a cat, we would take the cat back if something happened that they could not look after it?
“We’ve got a beautiful 12-month-old girl here at the moment, Misty, and she desperately wants a home.”
Cats and kittens can be purchased from the shelter, called 4 Paw Kitty Galore, at minimal cost.
The Grenfells only charge for costs associated with immunisation, microchipping and desexing, not for the cat itself.
“Not one animal leaves the rescue unless it has been immunised, desexed and microchipped,” Christine said.
Coles supermarket has a donation box for 4 Paw Kitty Galore, but any other donations of food, litter, and cat bedding would be greatly appreciated and can be dropped off at 323 Jones Street.
4 Paw Kitty Galore also offers a boarding service for cats, charging only for food and litter.
“The cost of regular boarding services are prohibitive, especially for pensioners,” Christine said.
Further enquiries can be made to Ray on 0418 480 369 or Christine on 0400 017 852.