When free spay-and-neuter surgeries ceased as the spring COVID wave peaked, cat advocates warned the city’s feline population would explode.

Now, they say, the months-long pause on surgeries at normally high-volume veterinary centers has led to exponential growth in the ranks of both feral and friendly felines on the streets of New York, unleashing a population prone to procreate.

“It was just a really hard decision for the clinics to make to shut down, and it certainly had an impact on the population of cats,” said Kathleen O’Malley of the Feral Cat Initiative, part of the animal-rescue nonprofit Bideawee. “We had more kittens born.”

Courtesy of Flatbush Cats The nonprofit Flatbush Cats helps to tame the population of feral felines through the trap-neuter-return (TNR) method. When free spay-and-neuter surgeries ceased as the spring COVID wave peaked, cat advocates warned the city’s feline population would explode.

Now, they say, the months-long pause on surgeries at […]

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