Apparently not a cat lover, Mike Charnock shakes his head in disgust at all of the cats roaming and defecating around his property, the Shores Waterfront Restaurant & Marina. ”They’re throughout the whole island,” Charnock tells WIVB television. “They’re multiplying horrendously; there’s just too many cats is what it boils down to.”
Fortunately, Danielle Coogan is doing more than shake her head and has launched her own trap, spay and neuter initiative dubbed “Operation: Island Cats.” She is community fundraising with GoFundMe and, at the time of this writing, has already pulled in more than $9500 for the cause.
“This is a small island with a big cat problem,” Coogan laments. “They’re just cats that no one really cares about…”
On her Go Fund Me page, she describes the problem with a heavy heart:
If you’ve ever been to The Shores restaurant in North Tonawanda, NY or have ever visited Tonawanda Island at all, then you know there is an overwhelming number of unvaccinated, unsterilized strays living on the island. Cats & kittens roam free & can be seen sleeping under boats, on boat trailers and on boat slips stacked high. Many of these cats have been born on the island & this is the only life they’ve ever known, some have been dumped by irresponsible owners who think souls are disposable. In an attempt to clean up the island & stop this vicious cycle of reproducing in an already extremely overcrowded area, I’ve decided, along with a friend & the help of Feral Cat Focus to humanely trap as many adults as I can. They will then be transported to Operation Pets, where they will be vaccinated, sterilized, have one of their ears “tippped” & re-released back on to the island. Many of the adult cats will unfortunately, not be adoptable, as they are too wild, but at the very least they will be fixed, unable to reproduce & free to spend the rest of their days without worry on their island home.
…all of the young kittens, whom are more easily tamed will be removed, placed in foster care for socialization & put up for adoption, with a bit of time & patience these babies will make wonderful pets! As you can see this project is a huge undertaking, but one that is very close to my heart. I vow to do all I can to help these poor kitties, but it will take a lot of time & money, please help me help them by making a donation to the cats of Tonawanda Island. Every dollar goes directly to the cats, whether it be for food, supplies, transportation, vetting fees etc. no donation is too small! Please consider making a donation & a difference in the lives of these “throw away” cats!!
Kudos to Danielle Coogan for not only seeing a problem, but being willing to do something about it. Thanks to recent media coverage, her Operation Island Cat initiative has received a wonderful boost in donations and offers from other animal rescue groups to assist with her efforts.
Sometimes, it only takes one person to make a big difference. By taking a stand on Tonawanda Island, Danielle Coogan has proved again that this is true.