Caring for abused cats

2017-05-02 15:10
Founder of PMB Kitten Fostering and Rescue Suzanne Kunz has opened her heart and home to many abandoned and rescued cats.

Founder of PMB Kitten Fostering and Rescue Suzanne Kunz has opened her heart and home to many abandoned and rescued cats. (Ian Carbutt)

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Founder of PMB Kitten Fostering and Rescue, Suzanne Kunz, has opened her heart and home to many abandoned and rescued kittens.

PMB Kitten Fostering and Rescue is a local non-profit organisation that Kunz operates from her home and she has about 30 abandoned kittens in her care.

Zimbabwean-born Kunz (41) does all this while raising her 10-year-old daughter, Jenna, as a single mother, and she also has a full-time job at the University of KwaZulu-Natal as a finance officer.

“I remember my parents bought me my first cat at the age of two and when we moved to South Africa we flew all our cats with us because we regarded them as part of the family.

“I absolutely adore cats and thought that since I have the means to help, then why not?

“I rely heavily on donations and the rest comes out of my bank account. It does cost a lot of money and is also time consuming. People say time is money but my time doesn’t cost anything because I am doing something that helps the animals and something I am passionate about.

“The cats we usually take in are abandoned, neglected, abused and feral kittens who are in desperate need of foster care.

“We work closely with the SPCA who help with the sterilisation of the mothers and the inoculations for the kittens.

“There are too many unwanted kittens, rescue centres are overflowing because of many unsterilised cats. We promote sterilisations even for feral cats, which we usually trap and sterilise and then release again.

“Many people fail to sterilise their cats and once they fall pregnant they suddenly don’t want their cats anymore. So we highly promote sterilisation and we also educate people about cats and the false myths they have about them.

“We use Facebook to help rehome the kittens, but we always encourage people to come meet the kittens before they take them home. I am of the belief that in most cases it is the kitten that oftens picks you.

“I also network with other foster groups as it helps with homing the kittens if maybe someone wants to adopt a kitten that I don’t have, but perhaps someone else has it.

“There is also a group of school pupils from Grace College who come on weekends and spend three hours here helping me with the cleaning and they play with the kittens.

“There is a lot of work that goes into fostering kittens and I sometimes take the newborn kittens to work with me as they are still bottle fed. I have my domestic worker and daughter, Jenna, to help me out. Jenna has grown to adore kittens and plans to become a vet when she’s older.

“People call and alert us about the abandoned kittens they find on the side of the road and some we find in car bonnets. My daughter and I try to name the kittens based on their colourings, personality and attitude.

“There are four other people who help me with fostering and they take in cats that they feel they are able to cope with,” said Kunz.

Despite many people calling her “the crazy cat woman”, Kunz told The Witness that the abandoned kittens are “very loving and affectionate” despite their ordeal and she loves what she does.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  pmb people

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