A fundraiser has been launched in order to try and save a number of stray cats that were being taken care of by an Ottawa man, who was recently killed on Eccles Street.
Jonathan Hammell was stabbed to death on November 11, and GoFundMe organizer Kathryn Hunt says one of the things Hammell used to do was feed and take care of the large colony of cats who live in the yard behind the Eccles Street house.
She explains that some of Hammell’s friends have now taken on the task of feeding the cats and finding new, safe homes for them.
A dog had also been left behind by one of the men accused in Hammell's death. Hunt says it's been adopted into a loving home but still needs to be neutered.
"This is a big job," she writes. "There are up to 12 adult cats and four kittens to be trapped, brought to the vet, and eventually fostered and adopted - all before winter arrives in earnest."
Hunt says she and her friends are currently trapping the cats, bringing them inside, and finding people who want to adopt or foster them.
"But ensuring that they're healthy and get the best new start is the priority, and the vet bills will be high," she adds. "Costs include food and supplies while we find them foster homes; spaying and neutering; medical checkups; de-worming; tests for diseases like feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), leukemia and upper respiratory disease; and vaccinations."
Some of the females cats are believed to be pregnant as well, which will add to overall costs.
Hunt says she and her group are reaching out to local veterinarians to find the best rates for a group of cats this large, and some of the new owners will be able to chip in, but she estimates they will need around $6,000 to cover expenses.
Any money left over from the GoFundMe, after the cats have found homes, will be donated to help the clients of St. Luke's Table care for their pets. St Luke's Table is a community service designed to provide support for the homeless or those at risk of homelessness and people living in rooming houses in our neighbourhood.