By: Tramane Harris and Jessy Edwards.

On a recent East New York evening, Meena Persaud assembled cat food in the back of her white SUV, prepping meals of dry food, canned food and shredded chicken for a few of the 550 feral cats she feeds daily.

From sunset to sunrise every night for the last four years, Persaud has fed and treated the cats at her own expense, learning their individual eating and living habits. She knows every cat and its preferences: which ones like chicken and which ones don’t; which ones eat with other cats and which ones eat alone; and which ones in the colony are fixed.

While people might think she’s crazy, Persaud says she just cannot look away from the suffering of animals.

As a certified ASPCA Trap, Neuter and Return specialist, Persaud also maintains the stray cat population in East New York and parts of Queens. 

Recently, the feral cat population she cares for has been on the increase. Due to the pandemic, hungry cats usually fed by restaurants have been making their way into her colonies.

Persaud normally spends $150 per day of her own savings on food for the cats. But recently, and with the increase in cats, the money had dried up. Persaud said she is coming forward now because she needs donations of cat food– wet, dry or even expiring; all of it gets eaten.

To help Meena Persaud and her cats, click here or head to her Instagram page.

Jessy Edwards

Jessy Edwards is a writer based in Bushwick. Originally from New Zealand, she has written for the BBC, Rolling Stone, NBC New York, CNBC and her hometown newspaper, The Dominion Post, among others.

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  1. Is this nuts? Cat Ladies used to be rightfully so, be given mental help.
    Why don’t you write about something positive?
    Cats slaughter billions of wildlife a year.
    Is this what you are reduced to for a story?
    TNR does not work.
    By neutering a few and feeding the rest – this woman is actually breeding cats.
    The food attracts rats and vermin.
    The cats eat next to the rats!
    BK Reader – try to find a real everyday hero.

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