Wednesday, February 13, 2008

A Little Good MEWS!



Last October on National Feral Cat Day (October 16), Foothills Humane Society kicked off their new feral cat Trap-Neuter-Release (TNR) program in an effort to help save some of the feral cats in our area and to allow them to live out their lives without continuing to add to the cat over-population problem with litter after litter of more kittens.

The feral cats that are trapped,  sterilized, and released as part of this program either have their ears tipped or notched so one can tell at a distance that they are indeed part of a managed colony. Yes. we keep repeating this so everyone can tell! This procedure is done while they are under anesthesia and they are also innoculated for rabies at this time.

Thanks to the awesome Po'Kitties Committee members and the support of caring folks in our community, a total of SIXTY!! CATS have been trapped, sterilized, and innoculated to date!  A really big thank you goes to Landrum Veterinary Hospital and  the FEARLESS vet techs and vets there for being willing to not only handle these cats, but also spay and neuter them!
Another big thank you goes to Jay Turney, the Polk County Animal Control Officer.  Jay has been helping us trap some kitties and is now able to give folks a non-lethal choice when he is called about feral cats.
We are trapping on a weekly basis to try to keep some of these  colonies from producing more Po'Kitties, but we still have a long way to go to make a real difference in the feral cat population.

Several cats have been relocated from dangerous areas, including the  "Hot Spot" cats. These beautiful cats are now living the life of luxury in a gorgeous barn with an attentive caregiver -- and they have exotic new names (which I cannot pronounce, much less spell) to go along with their new home!

Six kittens were trapped and socialized by volunteers and adopted out through the shelter to great homes. One of these kittens didn't even need to be socialized -- she already wanted to be a lap kitty! The other five spit and hissed for a few weeks but are now socialized and living with their adoptive families. Guess they decided that life in a house wasn't so bad after all!  Three of the adult cats we trapped in a high traffic area turned out to be tame, so after unsuccessful attempts to locate their owners, they were adopted out to wonderful homes!

If you have lost a cat, please be sure to call the shelter at 863-4444 .
Ask them to list your cat on the Lost Cat Report -- we always check it first when we find a cat who may not be feral. Unfortunately, many folks abandon cats, so it is not surprising that we are finding some in the feral colonies. Tame cats cannot be placed back in these colonies because they are unable to survive when they are left to fend for themselves. 
 
Cats must be given food and water on a daily basis. People think that if they don't feed their barn cat, it will catch more mice.  Wrong!  A well-fed cat is a healthy cat, and a healthy cat is the one who will catch the most mice!

We realize that our feral cat overpopulation problem is not going to disappear overnight, but one by one, we are trying to make this a better community for all of us -- humans and feral cats!  If you want to help us make a difference, call Dana at 894-5313 or Elaine at 859-5835.

If you are feeding and caretaking any feral cats, please call us -- we can help with trapping, sterilization, and rabies vaccines for the cats, and may be able to help in other ways.

And if you want more info on Po'Kitties and how you can help, please
visit our website at www.pokitties.com or email danamayer@alltel.net