The white-van men from AFCD are raiding Sai Kung villages after complaints, trapping cats and taking them to their deaths, Emily Pereira, a registered carer, said. If the cats caught are not microchipped and no one claims them they will be killed in four days. AFCD vets, some of whom hate their work, give the cats lethal injections.
Emily looks after the cat colony in Tan Cheung village. “I have had the same two cats from my colony trapped by the AFCD three times in one month.” In these cases the cats were carted in cages to the department’s Kowloon depot where their microchips were detected. They were then shipped in cages to the SPCA which contacted Emily, who picked them up and took them home in taxis.
Cats who go through this stress lose weight and become sickly. One got cat flu and was cured by a vet. “All this at considerable expense. I can’t understand why the AFCD men can’t take a scanner with them to check the cats before removing them,” Emily said. She started Sai Kung Cats in August. Her neighbours in Tan Cheung had been feeding feral cats for years and still do. “But when they came across kittens they didn’t know what to do, ” Emily said, so I stepped in.”
Another carer working closely with Emily is Debbie Chow. She’s registered with CCCP too and runs a volunteer group called Home Dog Home. “AFCD are aiming to help animals, including cats,” Emily said, “but this method isn’t working.”
More volunteers are needed to run CCCP programmes, getting the cats neutered, microchipped and homed. “With enough volunteers AFCD will not need to step in at all.”