By Amy Woolvett
THE COAST GUARD
It’s been almost a year since the colony of cats was found in a rundown Rockland home in eastern Shelburne County.
There were 37 cats rescued and of those cats there are 14 left still residing at the shelter.
Christmas came early for the remaining cats when thanks to the generosity of the local Masons, the felines are able to go outside for the first time since arriving at the Beulah Berman Animal Society Shelter in Shelburne.
Richard Stuart on behalf of Albert Lodge #30, Shelburne and Taylor Lodge #62, Lockeport has built an enclosed compound so that the many homeless cats can safely go outside to play.
“The Masons spend many hours volunteering their time to serve the community,” said BBMASS volunteer, Annette Holmes. “With more and more people leaving our area many organizations are feeling the pinch in regards to volunteers.”
The shelter has almost buckled under the weight of caring and bringing back to health so many cats at one time with the costs of vet bills, food and litter as well as volunteer resources to feed and care for the cats on a daily basis for the past year.
The Masons heard that the cats in the shelter had to stay inside everyday and decided to come to their aid.
Originally the enclosure was a dog run built by a group of volunteers including Bob Preston, Jimmy Mahaney, Mike Howe, Alan Pulfrey and Bruce Bennett and was recently adapted into the enclosure for the cats considering there are no dogs at the shelter.
“When the enclosure was completed,” said Holmes. “The cats went outside for the first time in almost a year …they climbed and pounced as though kittens again. It was a wonderful sight to watch.”
While the enclosure is a great opportunity for the animals it is only a temporary solution.
“We want to find forever homes for the cats,” said Holmes. “We hope there are people out there who will find it in their hears to either volunteer their time or to adopt one of these lovely cats. With time and patience you will gain a loyal and loving companion