The Cats’ Protection League in Canterbury was incorporated in 1973 and was the dream of our founder Ruby Austin.
Ruby originally started rescuing stray cats in Christchurch and did this for some time until she decided that a Cats Protection League should be started. She put an advertisement in The Star newspaper and was soon inundated with replies – reporters came and took photos giving her much needed publicity. A meeting was held in 1971 in a church hall in Woolston, which many people attended and a committee was formed.
The early days of the league were very difficult with stalls held every week to raise much needed funds. The stray cats were held in people’s homes and in garden sheds built to hold them. An old house was eventually rented which was used to sell and store goods and also had cages to hold the cats in and a small office.
When the house was demolished to make way for the George Manning Rest Home, a shop was purchased in Worcester Street which today sells donated goods five days a week.
By now the cats were also principally held in a cattery built behind Ruby’s house in Charlesworth Street Woolston. The property was sold to the league in 1998 to ensure that the facility to hold cats – and our legacy, remained.
The Aims of the League are:
- To relieve the suffering and distress of cats and kittens, including the provision of food, shelter and veterinary assistance
- To encourage owners of cats and kittens to have their animals spayed and neutered
- To find suitable homes for healthy stray cats and kittens
- To provide for the humane destruction of cats and kittens when necessary
- To give advice and help to owners of cats and kittens and promote public awareness of the need for spaying and neutering.
- The League is run by a committee and is a registered charity with Inland Revenue and the Charities Commission.
Our income is mainly from the sale of donated goods in our opportunity shop, donations, small charges for the sale of cats and kittens, collection boxes, stalls and bequests.
We have many expenses, principally veterinary fees, the provision of board, food, litter and wages.
The office of Cats’ Protection League is always busy with many calls made every day by people wanting us to take cats or kittens into our care, wanting assistance to get their cats desexed, or just asking for advice.
The office is located at 14 Charlesworth Street, Woolston and is open weekdays 10am to 4pm excluding public holidays.
The cattery is located at 14 Charlesworth Street and can hold up to 30 cats.
We moved into our brand new, purpose built building in February of 2017. Our new facilities have a number of special features to make our cats as comfortable and stress free as possible during their stay. Some such features include:
- Underfloor heating (which the cats adore)
- Larger cat pens where each cat has its own individual outside room, allowing them to enjoy the sun and breeze.
- Feliway diffusers for the very stressed cats
- “Family Pens” that can house multiple cats from the same household (such as bonded pairs who cannot be separated from each other)
Open Days allow members of the public to meet our cats and hopefully give a home to one of our felines. Currently we are operating via appointments – which can be made by phone. A member of our rehoming team will introduce our cats and explain their individual needs. We believe in being upfront with people and not setting our cats up to fail so we will inform you of any health or behavioral problems a particular cat may have. If we feel a certain cat may not be suitable to your unique circumstances, we will say so – please do not be offended!
Tuesday to Friday 11.00am – 2.30pm
Saturday 11.00am – 3.00pm
Sunday 11.00am – 2.30pm
Phone 03 376 6094 for details or email us at [email protected]
As well as the main cattery, fosterers hold cats and kittens at their own homes and some cats are boarded at other catteries awaiting a space with us.