A brief overview of cat welfare situation in Bulgaria
While trends in companion animal management are broadly positive in Europe and North America, Bulgaria is not on track to reach the humane pet population control. The community has given all attention to the abundance of unwanted dogs in Sofia, and the promises to either neuter or destroy them. However, the over-breeding in owned cat population always remains a major animal welfare issue throughout Bulgaria.
Anyone can obtain a cat, allow the animal to breed freely, and abandon or give away the offspring to anyone. There is a subpopulation of so-called "yard cats" constantly breeding in Sofia's family properties, whose offspring is constantly repopulating the neighbourhoods.
The excessive pet breeding contributes to many animal welfare, public health and safety, environmental, and fiscal problems. It is very seldom to find an owned female that has not given birth to an offspring or few. In people’s backyards domestic and neighbourhood cats are reproducing unrestrictedly.
The immense number of the animals bred by the pet lovers from their very birth exceeds the possibility for reliable ownership and have no chance to find suitable homes. Meantime the already grownups on a large-scale are quietly disappearing.
The direct consequence of the habitual pet breeding is an ever-changeable pet over population. The peculiarity of cat population is its striking inconstancy. Its makeup shifts very dynamically and the animal’s average lifespan is relatively low. Most of Bulgarian pet animals are doomed to a short lifespan, suffering and death wherever that may be in the unlicensed laboratories or illegal fur mills.
Since 2000, till now our crosscheck reference and findings on numerous occasions are leading to the conclusion about establishment of hurdles-free harvesting of great amount of pet animals, as a well-resource commodity. For instance, outgoing cats frequently disappear.
A big part of the bred animals in a how-d'ye-do state of no registration check and dependable shelter add to an hidden overpopulation through ads for secondary adoption. Becoming bored with soon after they grow, many owners pass their unregistered pets to whoever wants them. Parallel with all that the "re-homing" is such an unpopular thing in Bulgaria yet; so we very seldom see "second hands" to find anew a suitable home. Some form of collection and reduction, already exists - while throughout 70th and 80-th in Sofia you may ran across many old, sick and hungry cats, as well as cat carcasses, since 90th all that became rarity.
Many unregistered animals let free by the owners add to the noticeable overpopulation roaming the streets. Despite of that, the left animals do not stay in the streets and yards for a long time, there is no concentration of different generations of unwanted animals, the old, sick, starving and dead animals are rare in recent years.
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