Transforming the lives of Greece’s stray cats

Greece is home to an estimated 3 million stray cats who all too often have short, distressing lives. 

Constantly searching for their next meal, at risk of injury, disease and abuse these vulnerable cats can spend their entire lives without any veterinary care, shelter or positive human contact. 

No new homeless kittens 

Our top priority is to prevent the birth of homeless kittens by neutering as many stray cats as possible. 

Neutering is crucial because from around the age of 4 months, kittens reach sexual maturity and are therefore capable of breeding and producing kittens themselves. 

A fertile cat can produce an average of three litters in one year. The average number of kittens in a feline litter is four to six. That means up to 4,948 kittens can be born from one unspayed female cat and her offspring in seven years.

Celebrating the work of our partners 

That’s why we’re supporting fellow cat lovers, like the Kalmynos Cat Project, throughout Greece tackle the overpopulation crisis. 

Kalymnos Cat Project began when Leslie Frasier first visited Kalymnos in 2015 and noticed the dreadful state of the many stray cats on the island.  

She had experience in undertaking large scale Trap Neuter Return (TNR) programmes to manage feral cat populations in small mountain villages in the South of France, so decided to do the same thing on Kalymnos.  

Since starting TNR on the island, Leslie and her dedicated team of volunteers has made a huge difference. 

In 2023 a total of 888 cats underwent sterilisation, bringing the total number since the start of the project in 2021 to 1734 cats sterilised. 

Comprehensive cat care 

Leslie knows that community cats need more than just neutering. 

As a result, she set up a programme that sees volunteers from the Kalmynos Cat Project care for the cats before, during, and after TNR. 

Once the colonies are sterilised, they provide food at organised feeding stations to help the cats get through the winter season when the restaurants and tourists are no longer around to feed them. 

Making a real difference in the lives of stray cats 

“In 2023 we provided the Kalymnos Cat Project with a small grant to support their work. They’ve achieved a lot in a short space of time and are implementing a high-quality programme which is making a real difference to the lives of the island’s cats” said Joseph Nhan-O’Reily, the Chief Executive of Animal Action Greece. 

“It’s exactly the mode of comprehensive community-based cat care and population management which we want to see implemented across Greece. It’s what we’re supporting local animal welfare organisations across the country to do. 

“Leslie has shown the way and so we will be growing our support for the Kalymnos Cat Project this year,” concluded Joseph. 

It’s thanks to generous donations from kind supporters like you that we are able to continue our vital work and support cat rescues such as Kalymnos Cat Project. If you would like to donate to save a stray cat today, please click the button below.

Neutering – castration in the male (removal of the testes) and spaying the female (removal of the ovaries and uterus) is central to improving the lives of the world’s homeless cats and dogs.  

Neutering not only prevents unwanted pregnancies occurring but also curbs unwanted behaviours associated with sexual maturity and reduces the risk of certain diseases. 

It’s key to ensuring that stray cats and dogs become community cats and dogs, who are valued and cared for by the communities in which they live, even if they don’t have an individual owner. 

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