“The free chat policy only helps to contain the problem”

The town hall now works with two associations, l’Arche and Chats et citoyen, as well as with three Marmandais veterinarians. Each year, the City spends around 2,500 euros to finance this initiative, and the elected official is rather satisfied: “The results are there. This allows us to balance the management of this population and limit nuisances. We expect to have a little more perspective at the end of the year. »

Overwhelmed associations

But on the side of the associations, the results are a little more mixed: “This agreement helps us a lot, but ideally, we should sterilize more cats. The problem is that we have neither the human nor the material means to do so. We lack volunteers, premises and time. So for the moment, we are satisfied with 30 cats per year, because we cannot do more”, explains Fabienne Lagrange, president of Cats and citizens.

“A cat is two to three litters per year with four to six kittens on average. We are quickly overwhelmed”

Same observation for Marie-Jeanne Dario, at the head of L’Arche: “The situation is catastrophic, because people are abandoning their animals a lot. At the moment, we are right in the peak and we are overwhelmed. Caring for stray cats is a lot of work: you have to pick them up, capture them, take them to the vet, bring them back… We will never put an end to this proliferation. I’ve been doing this for thirty-five years, and people still don’t realize what the problem is. »

Necessary pedagogy

Veterinarian Pierre-Yves Martin, who is a partner of the municipal convention, believes that the sterilization of stray cats is only one aspect of the problem: “All people who feed cats outside and all individuals who have cats must sterilize them, because this population is extremely prolific. I have been working on this issue for fifteen years and every year, I still have as many in my office. The free chat policy only helps to contain the problem. It won’t be enough. »

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