10 September 2019

From cash to kittens, Elaine's Eurobodalla animal rescue mission

| Elise Searson
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Kia, the rescue kitten. Photo: Elise Searson.

“I just do it without thinking, and when it all falls into place it is just such a wonderful feeling,” says Elaine Schutt as she speaks fondly of her most recent adoptee, Kia the six week old kitten.

I originally met Elaine from Eurobodalla Animal Welfare League with intentions to chat about National Desexing Month which kicks off this week however the story was interrupted by two rescue Dachshunds and Elaine’s unmissable bond with the animals.

Elaine Schutt with her rescue dachshunds. Photo: Elise Searson.

“Kia is 10 weeks old, she was found a couple weeks ago in Potato Point when some people went to get into their car to got to work and heard some very faint meows coming from the front, and there curled up in the engine was Kia, that’s how she got her name.”

Before Elaine’s heart led her to animal rescue she had a long standing career as a debt collector where she spent her days on the phone asking people for money. Since retiring she swapped cash for kittens with her phone on seven days a week for rescues.

“I’m the first point of contact in an animal rescue emergency, unlike many other rescue organisations I take calls from 9 to 6 pm 7 days a week.”

Elaine Schutts. Photo: Elise Searson.

The Animal Welfare League and RSPCA are both working together to help cat and dog owners access affordable desexing taking the pressure off services.

“I’d like to see a lot more animals being desexed, because of the unwanted litter they have – half a dozen kittens or puppies,” Elaine says.

Kia was found under the bonnet of a Kia and was rescued by Elaine. Elaine has since adopted her. Photo: Elise Searson

RSPCA and Eurobodalla Shire Council are hosting a FREE Microchipping Day in Narooma on July 20 where you can book your cat or dog for free microchipping. Pet owners will also be entitled to a $50 discount for desexing at the vet of their choice.

President of the RSPCA Eurobodalla, Louise Webb says “July is about Animal Welfare League and ourselves providing discount desexing vouchers to all, not just those people on a pension or benefit, which is how they are allocated for the rest of the year. It is a particularly beneficial offer because new legislation in NSW now requires all cats over 4 months to be desexed.”

Outside of July, eligible low-income earners can receive up to a $120 discount for desexing their cat or dog.

Desexing befits include:

  • De-sexed pets, generally live longer, healthier and happier lives.
  • They become more affectionate and make better companions and are less likely to have anti-social behavior.
  • Reduces feline territorial behavior like spraying and with dogs marking territory and mounting other pets and/or your legs.
  • Both cats and dogs are less likely to fight or wander when looking for a mate and hence they are less likely to get lost or injured on the road.
  • Both cats and dogs can suffer physical and emotional exhaustion if allowed to breed continually.
  • Health wise less chance of cancers of the reproductive organs in both male and female animals.
  • No need for expensive vet bills associated with litters and then having to finds homes for them all and as from 1st July 2019 all pets sold must be micro chipped.
  • Cats can get pregnant at 3 months of age, your local vet can advise you as to what age and weight your kitten/puppy has to be to be de-sexed and vets agree it is an easier operation on a young pet and that they recover quicker.

Kia, the rescue kitten. Photo: Elise Searson.

Elaine says the Animal Welfare League is heavily reliant on philanthropy to survive, “We will sit in the Village Centre for 1 hour and might only raise $100.”

Even though Eurobodalla doesn’t currently have any animal shelters, Elaine doesn’t see the need for one.

“I like to see animals especially young kittens and puppies not put into a shelter situation but in a home where they get used to the vacumme cleaner and handled by kids.”

For more information on desexing or about becoming an at home animal career, call Elaine at the Animal Welfare League on 0436 816 718. Or to book your cat or dog in for free microchipping at the Narooma Leisure Centre call 0429 488 200 or check Council’s website.

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AWL does a fantastic job in rehoming animals in the Eurobodalla area. This is due to the helpful attitude of all branch volunteers especially Elaine, Shelagh & Clare. It is great to see the rapport AWL Eurobodalla has with RSPCA, Eurobodalla Council, AWL Far South Coast, various media & the general public. It is a true community minded service with Elaine as the first helpful “port of call”. July is desexing month & a big help to get as many animals as possible desexed with this financial aid. I hope all July desexing statistics are way over 2018 – every animal desexed means less animals are surrendered or euthanised. Good AWL Eurobodalla!

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