Growing stray cat population another problem for Pleasant Ridge

(Source: WAVE 3 News)
(Source: WAVE 3 News)
Updated: Jan. 23, 2018 at 10:52 PM EST
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CHARLESTOWN, IN (WAVE) – As redevelopment continues in the Pleasant Ridge neighborhood in Charlestown, vacant homes are creating a new problem.

The growing stray cat population in Charlestown has some neighbors looking for answers with few resources. However, one group of volunteers is looking to turn that around for the neighborhood.

"If you stay here long enough, if you drive through long enough, you're probably going to see 12 to 15 cats in front of you at any given time," Becky Karem DuVall said.

With plenty of nooks and crannies to hide in, Pleasant Ridge has become rather pleasant for cats.

"This subdivision is very convoluted," DuVall said. "It's so huge, there's just so many parts to it and there's probably about 150 different abandoned homes."

As a lover of all animals, DuVall said she pounced at the opportunity to rescue stray cats when a few neighbors brought the issue to her attention on Facebook.

"You can't see it right now because they are hiding," DuVall said. "Everywhere. Some are feral, some are domestic."

DuVall explained that some cats were left behind after home renters took off. All those cats are now at risk of facing dropping temperatures.

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"We put these out because of the weather," DuVall said, pointing at a plastic tote with a hole cut out from the front. "They have nowhere to go."

Homemade insulated totes filled with blankets and straw could be seen around the neighborhood. DuVall said a group in Louisville donated the totes in the hopes of providing temporary warmth and shelter for cats in between the rescue missions.

"We came up here and trapped about six to seven cats," DuVall explained her last rescue mission that took place three weeks ago. "Already found homes for them. Couple of barn homes for different feral cats, and got them fully vetted."

DuVall said her ultimate goal is to act quickly to address the cat issue before it's too late.

"The population is going to continue to get out of control," DuVall said. "Especially now, it doesn't seem like it in the winter time but kitten season is coming up and it is going to be huge."

DuVall said she is planning on heading out to Pleasant Ridge again this Saturday, January 27th to catch, spay/neuter and rehome more cats. If you would like to be a part of that mission, DuVall recommends finding her on Facebook.

You can find DuVall's Facebook page under her full name, Becky Karem DuVall.

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