MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A threatening letter posted by an upset neighbor on Mud Island has some animal advocates upset and worried about the fate of cats in the neighborhood.
Julie Schafer comes to visit little Sydney almost every day on Mud Island.
“She eats here every day at lunch and then she sleeps two streets over at a residence.”
The group she’s with, Friends of the Community Animal Society (FOCAS), makes sure feral cats are spayed or neutered across Memphis.
“If one cat doesn’t get spayed, she can be responsible for thousands of kittens over her lifetime. Thousands,” Schafer said.
If possible, they rehome them, but if not, they make sure they have a stable food source where they are.
“Most apartments that we work with are very happy about it because the cats keep back all the vermin, the rats, the mice, the snakes, especially out here.”
She says in their three years of doing work on Mud Island, they’ve spayed or neutered over 100 cats.
But one neighbor wasn’t happen about the program and asked Schafer to feed the cats farther away from her apartment, which she says she did while staying in the management’s approved zone.
Then over the weekend, Schafer came to find three letters pinned up near where they feed the cats.
The letters were addressed to “lady who puts out cat food” and said the feeding routines have attracted raccoons and others to the trash.
They then say, “I have had enough of it. This is your warning. If I see cat food anywhere on this street again I will start killing the cats to eliminate the issue all together.”
“I was shocked. I was mad. I was upset, fearful for the cats.” Schafer said.
She says that’s the first person to have such a negative reaction to their program and says they need to put out food to trap the cats.
“We just have one more at this location to get neutered, and then we’re going to move further down to the Riverset apartments.”
She hopes other neighbors show appreciation for what they’re trying to do.
Schafer says she alerted the district attorney’s office and police about the threats.
She also says the apartment management is dealing with the raccoon issue, which comes down to residents not properly storing their trash.
We tried to contact the person believed to be responsible for posting the note, but they were not home.