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Kathy's Kitties Works to Save Threatened Texas Prison Cats

A policy change meant a death sentence for over 300 feral cats at Gatesville Prison.  Kathy Kwieran got permission for some cats to be pulled and saved but is still working on saving the rest.  She asks everyone to please sign and share her petition and the cats’ plight.

Kathy Kwieran’s non-profit group Kathy’s Kitties is dedicated to providing spay and neuter services to domestic cats and their owners, and TNR to the Killeen, Texas area’s feral cats. Kathy has done TNR for many of the Gatesville Prison cats in the past, and has been the person to stand up and take action when a new warden decided that the long accepted presence of over 100 feral cats at the prison would no longer be allowed.

This Monday, the prison had employees begin trapping the cats, with Gatesville Animal Control coming out to pick them up. Animal Control acknowledged that the cats would be euthanized. Worse, any cats killed would die a terrible death by heartstick injection.  A small number of cats had already been killed when the local ABC news affiliate ran a story yesterday. That story is shown below. In contrast to the reasoning given in the video, we were told this evening that, according to guards, no one has said they were bitten by any of the cats.

Between her success in contacting the right people, exposure from the news report and her petition at, Kathy has made some headway in her effort to save the cats’ lives.  She posted last night at the group’s Kathy’s Kitties Facebook Page, “Good News: Animal Control agreed to let us get the eartipped cats. But the only way to save the others is by adoption only. Apparently they have quite a few cats now. I will be getting a list tomorrow and will be able to give you more info then. I think our next step will be setting up a meeting with the wardens to see if we can negotiate or try to compromise something where we all can be happy. So the more media exposure and signatures on the petition the better for our negotiations. So please sign and share! Thanks.”

Kathy and her group may need to act fast to ensure that lives are not lost while they are trying to get an agreement or make arrangements for all of the cats to be saved. Kathy is not the only area resident upset by the cats’ death sentence, but she has the experience to get things done.

Any readers wishing to help can sign and share the petition, found here: petition: Gatesville Prison Cats: Use TNR to control the overpopulation of feral cats at the prison.



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    March 23, 2012 8:07 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Jerry Bazinet

    These killings are unnecessary and the method used is most inhumane and cruel. There are wonderful alternatives for responsible living! Seek them out, please!

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    March 23, 2012 8:17 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Sally J. Nordstrom

    You allowed them to be there, now you’ve changed your mind. Oh for heaven’s sake, TNR them!

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    March 23, 2012 8:20 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Nancy Robison

    signed!! and who could kill cats this way? should be against their motto of saving lives.

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    March 23, 2012 8:45 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Faye Pugh

    Thank you Kathy. These animals are valid members of the society. Granted trap, neuter and release is needed but they provide rodent control and a way to dispose of uneaten food. In addition, they provide pet therapy and stress relief to the inmates. Has anyone thought of taming a few for hands on therapy?

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    March 23, 2012 11:01 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Jean Hehn-Bradley

    Cat’s eat mice and rats, its better than trapping those rodents. And, cleaner.

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    March 27, 2012 11:57 amPosted 3 years ago
    Brennan Browne

    Tried to access the petition but it will not load. I had the same problem when I found the link thru my search engine. It could just be my computer but wanted to give a head’s up anyway. I’ll keep trying. Heartfelt thanks and kudos for your hard work and advocacy for our felines, Kathy!

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    March 27, 2012 12:29 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Rosalie Ingram

    Please visit Kathy’s facebook page for ways to help directly. I have worked at this prison as a correctional officer for going on 9 years now and have spayed/neutered many cats at personal cost to me and adopted out many more (1 to myself, and Mau-Mau is possibly the best pet I’ve had). We used to be allowed to bring food and supplies to care for the animals, but the changed administration has made that impossible, forbidden even. When I found out about the plan to corral and euthanize all the cats indiscriminately I was sickened and angry. The reasons given were flimsy at best and downright lies for the most part. In my years of employment I have; never seen a cat attack anyone (have seen people be cruel to them many times), witnessed cats catching mice, rats, and other vermin, and have seen the positive effects caring for animals has on the inmates. We do not have a flea and tick problem because of the cats, we are in a rural area and our unit is home to dogs, horses, raccoons, skunks, possums and many more animals, there is no plan to dispose of any of the other animals, so why are the feral cats being targeted? I am at my wits end as to what to do, as the upper administration doesn’t seem to care what we think of it or how we feel. The local animal control has only been marginally helpfull, (still euthanizing animals) but has relinquished a select few. Please continue to circulate this story and maybe the awareness and outrage will force this practice to be stopped by sheer embarrasment if not by any moral qualms. The only flaw with the article that I saw was that they are forcing employees to set the traps, not the inmates.

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    March 28, 2012 12:21 amPosted 3 years ago
    Matthew DeLuca

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    The precious living souls…the feral cats have NOT commited any crimes, and thus, you are out of line to condemn them to death. Who do you think you are? You are who every individual feral cat is: A precious living soul, an Earthling, an individual person. You are nothing more, nothing less. Get off of your high horse and walk a mile in someone else’s shoes, or, in this case, paws, before you ignorantly and arrogantly judge them to be worthy of life or not. THE LIVES OF THOSE CATS ARE EQUALLY AS PRECIOUS AS YOURS AND MINE. Do the right thing (saving the cats), not the criminal thing (murdering them).
    Thank you.

    Learn more about the RIGHT way to handle this issue, TNR (Trap, Neuter, Return) by going here:


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