Our Founder

Karen J. McGranahan

I have been an animal lover and cat and dog owner since childhood. I got involved by financially supporting numerous animal agencies for over 25 years and support many to this day.

To learn more about Karen and the Bikini Beach Cat Rescue story keep reading or watch her interview on Inside Out with Diane DeVaughn Stokes ⇒

My Start in Cat/Kitten Welfare

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Karen J. McGranahan

In my teen years, I worked for a riding academy, where I learned about horse care, illnesses and training, and went to many horse shows over the four years there. I then went off to college to complete my education.

When I moved to South Carolina, there was a group of community (feral) cats at the end of our street, which I trapped and had them fixed. I volunteered for a local cat shelter, was on the board, and took care of more than 500 cats and kittens at the shelter. One of my responsibilities was to answer the phone; over time I realized how big a problem community cats were and realized something more needed to be done.

Click Here To Learn More About Karen & Her Story

Many cats were surrendered to the shelter and traumatized to lose the only home they ever knew, not understanding what they did wrong to be left behind by the only family they ever knew. They would wait patiently, watching for their family to return, not understanding their family wasn't ever coming back for them. Some arrived frightened, some were dumped in a strange neighborhood; they would watch in terror as their families drove away and left them alone and frightened. Some would be thrown from bridges; others from moving cars. Cats cannot be adopted out fast enough, so many cats languish at shelters for years waiting for homes that never happen for many of them. Most are euthanized after a short stay because of a lack of space at the shelters.This is the real life tragedy of animal overpopulation and not enough homes.

During kitten season, I had to turn away between 100 and 125 cats and kittens a week because the shelter was full; all the other shelters were full. Sadly, there was no place for them to go. I felt helpless. There were so many people who really cared about their cats whether they were inside or outdoors. Currently over 80% of cats entering kill shelters are euthanized; a statistic no one should be proud of in any community. I realized that housing as many cats as possible was not the long term solution to the cat and kitten problem within the community; I needed to look at how to stop litters of surplus kittens from being born and keep them from entering the shelter. When I asked the people why they did not fix their cat, their answer was always the same: the cost.

The Beginning of Bikini Beach Cat Rescue

So Bikini Beach Cat Rescue was started to offer residents a low-cost spay/neuter option; we now have two weekly clinics for residents to prevent kittens from being born. Another key component still was needed: TNR (Trap-Neuter-Return), a proven program that works by reducing cat numbers through natural attrition. When they cannot reproduce, no more kittens are born to take their place.

Bikini Beach Cat Rescue was incorporated in 2011 as a non-profit organization with the mission of providing low-cost spay/neuter clinics in this area; we now have two weekly clinics available. We received our 501 (c) 3 status from the IRS in 2012 and are tax-exempt, so all donations are tax-deductible to you. All funds raised goes towards these reduced low-cost spay/neuter clinics for cats and kittens.

By preventing kittens from being born into an unknown future, we ultimately reduce the unwanted breeding of cats and kittens and the resultant shelter intake. The sad fact: kittens that haven’t even been conceived this year will die next year unless we can stop this breeding cycle.

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We also do some targeted TNR programs with volunteers and grant money and do fundraisers to offer everyone subsidized low-cost spay/neuter clinics throughout the year. With your support, we can make a difference and stop healthy, adoptable cats from euthanasia. It doesn't matter that their deaths are 'painless', what matters is that their deaths are 'pointless'.

As Helen Keller said: "I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. I will not refuse to do the something I can do." Your donations help us do the "something"?