BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) —  If you’ve ever seen a stray cat and wondered just how many others are around the area. Well, the answer might surprise you.

Local animal activists say there are dozens of stray cats at every apartment complex, in truck yards and behind many large business buildings.

Bakersfield residents are no strangers to seeing stray cats around town. Many of these cats are not spayed or neutered. That’s why animal activists are taking it upon themselves to capture these cats with traps like this one to help fix the problem.

They’ve been saving lives for years.

“There’s over a hundred every year and we’ve been doing it for a few years now,” Jim Panasiewicz an animal activist said.

Animal activists have spent their time, money and resources to feed, spay and neuter stray cats throughout Bakersfield.

“If you don’t feed it who else will do it? They will die and that’s what some people want. They think they’re pests. That they need to go. They deserve to live,” Ivette Carles an animal activist said. “They deserve to have a good life and find a good home. They don’t deserve to be dumped. They’re your babies.”

Carles said they trap feral cats throughout the week and take them to Critters Without Liters to get them fixed but the work isn’t easy.

“You have to get there really early at three o’clock in the morning,” Carles said. “Then only two cats per person are able to come so when you’re trying to get 20 to 40 cats you have to go everyday, everyday, everyday. It’s just too much.”

The activists said trapping a cat is a lot like fishing. You have to have patience. The cat traps are simple. Find your spot. Lay the inside with newspaper and food. Set the trap door and wait. About an hour later and you’ll have a cat or two when you come back.

The activists said it’s important to get these strays fixed so that the kittens don’t die. One of the kittens in this litter didn’t make it by the time help arrived.

“Summer or Winter. Sometimes the kittens just die because they’re dehydrated or the moms haven’t eaten and can’t feed them and you just see them laying there everywhere dead and it’s just hard,” Carles said.

If you’d like to help but don’t have enough time to you can donate food or money. Here is a list of cat organizations and a vet clinic that will accept your generosity according to the animal activists.

Bakersfield Pet Food Pantry, 4500 Shepard St, Bakersfield, CA 93313, (661) 369-1222

Cat People and Pawsitively Cats Sanctuary, 120 East Dr, Bakersfield, CA 93308, (661) 327-4706

Auburn Animal Hospital, 3713 Auburn St, Bakersfield, CA 93306, (661) 872-0363