Thursday, April 18, 2024

Chelan Valley Feral Cat Project continues to grow

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CHELAN – April Leaf and Wendy Isenhart, leaders of the Chelan Valley feral cat project, attended the Oct. 17 Community Funding Request City Council meeting to ask for $5,000 toward their continued care for needy cats.

The CVFCP is currently dedicated to the overall care and rehabilitation of cats. Some of this care includes the humane trapping, spaying/neutering, and returning of cats to their original environments. The CVFCP has served 80 cats as of Oct. 19, and continues to serve more each passing day.  

According to Leaf, their annual budget is conservatively estimated at $15,000, with much of their funding coming from private donations. This week they are starting the application process to obtain formal non-profit status, and are hoping to have their license by January.

Leaf and Isenhart spend much time, and money out of their own pockets, toward this effort. Leaf is also heavily involved in the rehoming of cats. This said, CVFCP  has also seen an immense amount of support from community members.

“The community is really generous. We have people that are monthly donating to us $50 or $100, and anybody who gets a cat from us always donates money to us. This community is so giving,” Leaf said

Some of the healthcare the CVFCP provides for cats includes vaccination against rabies, upper respiratory viruses, and feline leukemia. Providing them ear-mite checks is also a priority.

“Many of the feral cats have ear mites so bad they become infections,” Leaf explained. “I actually have a feral living at my house. He’s old, he was starving to death. He’d gone deaf from having ear infections so bad…his hearing is completely damaged. He could never survive in the wild now.”

The CVFCP are currently working with a population of 40 cats near the airport. Of those 40, they have already served 4. Leaf is excited to work with the cats at this location, as their needs are especially high.

Now known for her passion and dedication to caring for feral cats, Leaf is often approached by people for assistance. She cites there being a long list of places in the community where cats currently need help. One colony in town she mentions resides near Wapato and Emerson, by the Episcopal Church.

CVFCP updates can be found on Facebook, NextDoor, or by directly requesting a copy of their Mewsletter.

Katie Lindert: 509-731-3211 or katie@ward.media

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