By John McDevitt
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — It’s that time of year when animal activists and others notice a surge of cats living on the street near college campuses. In one University City neighborhood, long-time residents are feeding cats believed to be abandoned by college students who have since graduated.READ MORE: FDA Advisers Endorse Emergency Use For Johnson & Johnson's One-Dose COVID-19 Vaccine
They are not feral, but friendly cats, strays that were once pets. Several take over Pam Wells’ stoop daily when it’s feeding time. She says she know the animals once belonged to students who abandoned them after graduating.
“This orange kitty, Rusty, lived here with students that lived here years ago,” Wells says. “The white cat lived across the street”READ MORE: Philadelphia School District Parents 'Not Surprised' Return To In-Person Learning For Some Students Delayed Again
Beth Van Horn of West Philadelphia is the director of Project MEOW, a non-profit which focuses on reducing the stray and feral cat population by trapping, neutering and release events.
“Often times students will take in outdoor cats,” Van Horn says. “They might be kittens or whatever. They rescue them and then they figure, well, it’s the end of the semester, this cat came from outside it can survive outside.”
Van Horn suggests students foster a cat while in school.MORE NEWS: Raymir Johnson Arrested For Driving Alleged Shooter From Scene Of Deadly East Norriton Bowling Alley Shooting, Police Say
Click the links below for more information on programs like spay and neutering, and cat adoption opportunities: