Humane Society in Northern California Debuts Homeless Cats Documentary

The film, titled Cats Without a Home, urges people to spay/neuter.

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Humane Society Silicon Valley (HSSV) in Northern California has collaborated with independent filmmakers from Jump Cutters Video to produce a documentary on homeless cats in Santa Clara County, Calif. The film, titled Cats Without a Home, will be shown at a series of town hall meetings throughout the year.

The first public viewing of the film was held at Pioneer High School Pac Auditorium in San Jose, Calif., on June 8.

The 30-minute documentary weaves the plight of homeless cats in Santa Clara County by following six people committed to reducing the unnecessary euthanasia of homeless cats. A trailer of the film can be accessed at: http://www.catswithoutahome.com.

We shot the film over an eight month period, and it truly became a labor of love. We wanted to introduce viewers to the secret world of homeless cats and bring to light the painful reality shelter workers and the community endures when a homeless cat not suitable for adoption is euthanized, said Todd Lehr, a videographer and editor for Jump Cutters Video.

According to Humane Society Silicon Valley President Christine Benninger, an estimated 125,000 homeless cats roam streets in the United States; cats comprise roughly two-thirds of the animals brought to shelters and are euthanized at a far greater rate than other animals. This is because a majority of cats are feral or too young or too sick to be adopted, according to Benninger. In Santa Clara County alone, Benninger says, about 14,000 cats are euthanized annually at a cost of $2.4 million.

All too often, people feeding the neighborhood stray cat, don't get that cat spayed/neutered and find themselves with a litter of unwanted kittens. Our message to these folks is be a responsible caregiver and spay/neuter the homeless cat you're feeding, Benninger said.

Posted: June 9, 2006, 5:00 a.m. EST

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