A homeless man who previously told The News that society cares more about the welfare of his cats than they do about him says he has been proven right.
Zolicon (who withheld his legal name) had his two cats, Misty and Violet Planet, seized by the BC SPCA on June 2, just over a month after he became homeless.
“They took the cats and they left me out here on the streets with nothing,” he said. “I’ve got no money, no food, no shelter, no water. I’m out here with nothing.”
The cats were living in “absolutely not OK conditions,” according to Marcie Moriarty, the BC SPCA’s chief prevention and enforcement officer.
She said the cats were being contained in a small kennel or on a leash near a busy road, which caused them a great deal of stress.
She said it’s very difficult for a homeless person to take care of cats compared to dogs, which are usually more conditioned to being confined on a leash.
SPCA staff visited Zolicon on several occasions and offered him free “compassionate boarding” for the cats in a shelter.
Eventually, Moriarty said, they had no choice but to seize Zolicon’s pets.
“These cats were in a state of distress and had to be removed,” she said.
Zolicon said that he hasn’t been able to see Misty and Violet Planet since and wants them back.
“They care about the animals but they don’t care about the people,” he said.
Zolicon said he has had several offers of help to find an apartment to rent since his story was published in the May 19 edition of The News.
“No luck,” he said, adding that Abbotsford has a near-impossible rental market for someone on disability assistance.
He has, however, likely found a temporary home for his cats. His friend, who is staying at a local women’s shelter, will be able to take them in, he said.
Moriarty said an SPCA officer will check the facility to ensure it’s a suitable environment for the animals and, if so, will release the cats.
“We are trying to work with this individual. We don’t want to see him separated from his cats permanently and we are trying to offer everything that we can,” she said. “We want to keep people with their pets.”
See video below from before Zolicon’s cats were taken.