If you ever decide to take a stroll at night, you may notice an occasional feline nearby. While some cats might seem friendly, others can be more dangerous.
"Pet population is a huge issue here in Natrona County, especially with cats,” said Craig Cummings, Shelter Manager of the Casper Humane Society. “There are a large number of stray cats and cats that are owned by people who are never spayed or neutered, and they can populate at an incredible speed."
Over-population of cats has become problematic over the past year, and the Casper Humane Society is doing what it can to accommodate them all.
"Normally, we'll have a couple of what we call 'kitten seasons' here,” Cummings explained. “This past year we actually had kittens here in the shelter all through the winter and through the spring and summer as well."
Many places can provide shelter for stray and homeless cats. Some of these places can include local playgrounds, nearby parks, even shrubbery next to buildings.
"I think that one thing people don't always understand is that it's actually illegal to allow your cat to roam off of your property. Cats are considered pets just like dogs and so they're in a lot of the same laws and ordinances as dogs here in Natrona County."
The Casper Humane Society strongly promotes controlling the pet population, by spaying or neutering, as they have been seeing a larger intake of cats.
Even though they may look friendly, approaching a cat that you're not familiar with might not be the best of ideas, especially with younger children around.
However, if a person does decide to pick up a stray cat, there are certain things they must to do ensure proper care.
"Whenever a lost or stray animal is picked up, it must be reported to Metro Animal Control,” said Cummings. “They can either have it there at the shelter or they can actually come out and pick up animals as well."
So far this year, Metro Animal Control has picked up over 850 cats. That number is expected to grow through the rest of this year.
If you are in need of assistance securing a stray cat or dog, or are missing an animal, you can call Metro Animal Control at (307)235-8398 or the Casper Humane Society at (307)265-5439.