Showing posts with label tourists. Show all posts
Showing posts with label tourists. Show all posts

Tuesday 19 September 2023

Well known American animal advocate is conned into believing that the Greeks are kind to their street cats

Nathan Winograd and his wife went on holiday in Greece. He is a great American animal advocate and an expert on no-kill animal shelters. I can visualise his visit now. The warm balmy evenings, the white buildings and the deep blue sky reflected in the sea. And in Greece there are lots of street cats. 

It seems that all the domestic cats are on the street joining with the stray cats and the feral cats. I guess we call them community cats. But in Greece the domestic cats live outside which contrasts with the 50% in the US who live inside 24/7. But there are too many stray and feral cats in Greece.

Nathan Winograd in Greece interacting with a dark tortoiseshell street cat and enjoying himself. Perhaps this little fella will be poisoned like many thousands of others in October. Picture by Nathan Winograd's wife (believed).

The feral cats are quite friendly because the meet with the tourists who like to have them around. Just like Nathan Winograd they enjoy interacting with the street cats of Greece. He wanted to help them, to feed them but was told that they are fed and well looked after.

He asked a restaurant owner to give him some food to feed the cats but he insisted there was no need. He was told not to worry. They are taken care of.

The street cats of Greece are tourist attractions which brings me to the next point. When the holiday season is over in Greece sometime in October, the local people poison the street cats. They put down poison in water or in food. It might be weedkiller it might be antifreeze. You name it they use it.

They rely on the dustbin men to pick up the dead bodies and throw them away. It's as simple as that and its mass cruelty. It is mass animal cruelty and, in the UK, and in America I suspect there would be mass prosecutions of these friendly Greek locals who think nothing of poisoning the charming street cats of mainland Greece and the Greek islands. But not in Greece. It is simply accepted as normal.

You don't have to research very hard to find out that what I have said is true. It appears that the Greeks don't like to neuter their animals which is why there are hundreds of thousands of them in the street. And it also appears that they don't like to operate TNR programs. This implies to me that they are lazy about looking after these cats. They say it's easier just to put down poison and kill them at the end of the season.

It doesn't seem to be a very good relationship between humans and cats, does it? It is not the way it is meant to be. It's not part of the unwritten contract between cat and person.

The Daily Mail online recites an interview between a visitor to Greece and a local. And the visitor asked why aren't the cat poisoners caught? He said no one's bothered. They aren't bothered about catching the poisoners. They know who they are but nothing is done. "It's just the way of things here".

It's the attitude and the attitude is that the cats are expendable. They have zero value. It almost seems that they believe that the street cats of Greece are not sentient beings; just decorative objects to add a bit of colour to the streets for the enjoyment of the tourists.

I'm afraid that Nathan Winograd, the great man he is, was conned mercilessly by the locals when he was told that they looked after the cats. I guess that was partly true because during the summer months they are looked after by the residents and by the tourists but come October, the cats that Nathan Winograd saw and interacted with will be dead, in a landfill site, out of the way.

And then in the spring of next year more kittens will arrive to live their short lives as entertainers to the unknowing tourists.

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