Condo Community Solving Cat Issues
By Deb Hill
The condo community of Ke Nani Kai has endured the differences of opinion regarding the cat population which inhabits their property. As in any community, diversity of ideas, values and priorities have challenged homeowners to find solutions that work for the collective good of residents, as well as the animals.
For 20 years Ke Nani Kai residents have taken advantage of the Molokai Humane Society (MHS) spaying and neutering program – in the last three years, the community set a goal to have all property cats spayed or neutered. Some individuals wanted the cats eradicated; others sought humane action, such as relocation off island to no-kill shelters. In the past year, residents have created an Animal Control Committee, implementing policies and procedures that have brought solutions sensitive to the needs of all community residents and guests.
According to resident and committee member Carol Garland, approximately 36 cats currently live on the property. Although these cats may not belong to a single household, most are domesticated and are cared for by the condo community residents. The committee of concerned residents work vigorously with MHS to ensure that these cats are spayed or neutered and have had their shots. Remarkably, 95 percent of these cats are currently spayed or neutered.
According to the Animal Control Committee, there is a positive impact on the community at Ke Nani Kai. The rodent population is managed by the cats, resulting is less damage to infrastructure, less rodent waste, and a general feeling of ease. The potential negative aspects of having cats on the property are mitigated by the concerned residents maintaining a high level of sensitivity to those who may have allergies to cats or are ‘just not cat people’. The committee takes their commitments seriously and their duties range from keeping the common area clean of the cat waste, feeding the cats according to schedule, and most importantly, being open-minded to hearing and problem solving individual’s concerns as they may arise.
The committee has also recently established a new adoption policy. Cats may be adopted by the residents or guests to take back to their homes on the mainland. In an effort to adopt these animals to loving homes, the committee offers up to $300 per suitable adopter to cover travel costs. These efforts are supported through private Ke Nani Kai resident and guest’s donations.
MHS provides spay and neuter services for $10. They also have cat traps available for loan. Feel free to contact the Molokai Humane Society for more information at 558-0000.