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Cans for a Cause helps cats in need through recyclables

Standing Together an Animal Rescue Service held a fundraiser to ensure a brighter future for cats who were abandoned or born on the cold streets of Buffalo.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — When Jullianne Leslie founded Standing Together an Animal Rescue Service (STARS), her goal was to save the guinea pigs and small pets that most people don't think about being abandoned.

Leslie says that some pet owners often release these affordable pets outside rather than giving to a shelter. 

A guinea pig owner herself, this passion was close to her heart. But now, the passion has grown, and STARS now also serves the cats abandoned or born into a life lived on cold, harsh Buffalo streets.

Sunday was all about those cats when STARS held a fundraiser to support the 12 cats they currently house. 

Leslie and her team collected empty cans, bottles and glass on Sunday with the intention of using the returns to fund the cats' vet fees, as well as the costs to get them spayed, neutered and up to date on their shots. 

"We solely rely on donations, so if we don't have the donations coming in, the cats just sit there until we're actually able to get the proper funding to vet them and able to get them into their forever homes," Leslie told 2 On Your Side.

STARS is devoted to giving these cats and small animals another chance at life and a loving home, as well as making sure that future pets aren't giving birth on the street. 

"Our goal for next spring: to cut the cat community in half. We want to try to make so that there's no unwanted litters outside, and just make sure that every animal is out of the shelter program and into a nice, warm house," Leslie added. 

Did you know that on average, a reproducing female cat gives birth to 12 babies a year? For every kitties that we fix, we save the lives of more than a dozen kittens EACH YEAR and up to 100 in their lifetime!

While their Cans for a Cause drive happened Sunday, you can still participate in STARS' efforts by visiting their website, where you can donate, adopt, and find out more about their efforts, including their current and future fundraisers. 

Leslie also added that in addition to monetary donations, STARS is always looking for additional supplies, especially cat kennels, carriers and KMR.

KMR, or kitten formula, helps them feed kittens found or born into their care. 

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