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Keeping stray cats warm this winter in the Maritimes

Shelley Steeves, reporting
November 11, 2011 — With the colder months ahead, a group in the Maritimes is looking at ways to provide shelters for thousands of stray cats.

Thousands of stray cats die every winter because of the cold and lack of food
Thousands of stray cats die every winter because of the cold and lack of food

There is a growing problem here in the Maritimes that most people are not even aware of. Thousands of stray or feral cats die every winter of starvation or some even freeze to death. But a group here in the Maritimes is trying to help.

“The biggest problem is our climate, the weather. They have not only their natural predators but they have disease that comes on this time of the year. They have fight the cold, the elements, lack of food and lack of water,” says Elizabeth MacDonald of Cat Rescue Maritimes. “Right now we are building some shelters to give to caregivers.”

Doug Stockall is a Carma volunteer who is looking to help the situation.

“I have volunteered to put together six cat shelters. They have supplied me all the materials and I just put them together and build them,” he says.

MacDonald says volunteers like Stockall make a big difference.

An example of the shelters being built
An example of the shelters being built

“Our caregivers are willing to give them some shelter and to give them food and fresh water twice a day. Dehydration is also a huge factor in the winter because everything freezes,” she explains. “If anyone can contribute in any way at all then that's a huge help. I enjoy doing stuff for the animals it's quite enjoyable to see that something is being done. Anybody can do it.”

On a beautiful Fall day, the cats are not likely to use the shelters much. But once the temperatures turn colder, a shelter about this size can house and save about six cats over the winter months.

If you'd like more information on how you can build a shelter like this and help some animals survive the winter you can contact carma at

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