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County may euthanize 27 cats by Christmas

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- DOOMED? :  This cat and its close relatives may soon be killed. -  - PHOTO BY STEVE E. MILLER
  • PHOTO BY STEVE E. MILLER
  • DOOMED? : This cat and its close relatives may soon be killed.
A group of cats confiscated from a single household could die by Christmas if they’re not adopted, county animal officials said. The fate of the felines will be decided Dec. 23, the same day they will be available for adoption, said Eric Anderson, San Luis Obispo County animal services manager.

The cats were picked up Dec. 17 by San Luis Obispo County Animal Services, county officials said.  The shelter has been overcrowded this holiday season, and volunteers have been helping the shelter adopt out pets.

The cats haven’t been shown on the animal services website and have been segregated from the rest of the animal population and kept away from the public areas of the shelter.

According to Anderson, the cats were picked up from an Atascadero home on Dec 17. Citing unsanitary conditions, Anderson said the department had to take the cats from the family, who have now relinquished ownership. Legal charges are under consideration.

The cats, many of which are described by Anderson as feral and “somewhat aggressive,” are being evaluated to see whether they’re fit for adoption.

Most people want a calm, tame, indoor-type cat, and felines that don’t fit that description are very hard to adopt, Anderson said.

The decision on which cats will be deemed “adoptable” will be made late on Dec 23. He said the sad situation is due to persistent overcrowding at the shelter.

“The shelter is somewhat taxed,” Anderson explained. “Our desire is to minimize euthanasia, but if they are not adopted some may be euthanized.”

Many of the cats have calmed down and will probably be adoptable, said Shelter Supervisor Andrea Little.

Anderson refused to say when any un-adopted cats would be put down; he said a rumored Christmas Eve euthanasia date was “not really fair and reactionary” for anyone to suggest, but conceded many of the cats may be gone by Christmas if there’s not room for them.

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