In August 2012, I began rescuing stray cats from the streets of Perrysville after learning some residents were going to poison them. Since then, I’ve taken over 300 stray cats off the streets finding homes for two-thirds of them so far. The cats are spayed, neutered, vetted at my expense. The only help I get are occasional small donations and assistance from an area foundation.

The rescue is full and I can no longer cover the thousands of dollars a year it takes to support it. Monthly rescue expenditures include: 600 pounds of dry cat food, hundreds of pounds of litter, utilities for cat buildings I purchased, and a vet bill I continually struggle to pay (even though I do much of my own vetting).

Apparently my efforts aren’t enough for some Perrysville residents who continually complain I’m not doing my "job." For the record, it’s not my job. I volunteer. I owe the village nothing.

No one person can humanely take every stray cat out of a community by themselves, especially when owners don’t get their own pets spayed/neutered even though there are low-cost clinics nearby. While there are those who truly can’t afford these expenses, there are others who say they can’t afford them yet can afford the latest phone, electronics and other "necessities." It’s a matter of priorities.

To those who complain I ask: How much time or money have you spent trying to humanely remedy the situation? How many stray cats have you helped or gotten spayed/neutered?

I’ve done more than enough. It’s time for others to put their time and money where their mouths are.

Jackie Deems