Five stray cats, which were part of a clowder of feral felines terrorising residents and their domesticated cats in Bosch Street, Sarepta, have been put down by the SPCA.
The residents say they were being kept awake at night by the scavenging cats, which they blamed for injuring one family’s cat, stealing food, and making a racket from the rooftops.
Heather Steenkamp said she had to pay a vet R8000 to patch up her cat after it was mauled by some 20 to 30 of the strays.
“He stayed with the vet for three nights. They scratched his face, which got swollen and he got a fever from that. He did not eat for days; he was close to dying,” Ms Steenkamp said.
“These cats breed all the time. They frequently came into our house to eat our cat’s food.”
Neighbours said the noisy cats belonged to a Bosch Street resident who had died. She had left a relative to look after the cats’ food, but they had not been sterilised.
Resident Isaac Jenecke said: “The cats are multiplying and are a menace. These cats roam at night on the roofs and have taken someone’s food from their kitchen. The cats procreate on other people’s yards.”
He said he had counted 10 cats, and at one point, they had been on his roof at 12.47am.
Shanon Mackay said the cats had stolen food from her home.
Ward councillor Wouter de Vos said he had reported the matter to the SPCA.
SPCA spokeswoman Belinda Abraham said they had visited the area, captured and euthanised five feral cats.
“It is undeniably cruel to keep animals without rehoming prospects confined indefinitely,” said the SPCA’s animal care centre manager Zama Mabena.
SPCA chief inspector Jaco Pieterse said they had set cat traps and asked residents to call them when a cat had been captured.
“The cats are ownerless. We were advised that they were abandoned and have now turned feral. We do not know how long they were abandoned for,” he said.