What Are Feral Cats?
A feral or free-roaming cat is one that lives outside, and is not socialized to humans. Feral cats can have the same lifespan as companion cats, and their incidence of disease is just as low. Feral cats can live long, healthy lives—content in their outdoor homes.
Feral cats typically live in colonies with access to food and shelter. An unmanaged colony can become a problem, with rampant breeding and the onset of problem mating behaviors (fighting, yowling, etc.). However, feral cats should not be taken to the animal shelter, as they are not adoptable and can only be euthanized.
Catching and killing the cats does not work – when cats are removed from an area, survivors breed to capacity or new cats move in. This is known as the “vacuum effect," and has been well-documented. Download Fact Sheet
*Vacuum Effect Fact Sheet provided by Alley Cat Allies
What is TNR?
Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) is the most humane and effective method available to end the severe feral cat overpopulation crisis. This method is endorsed by national animal welfare groups, as well as many animal control departments, as the best option for feral cats and the communities they inhabit.
HOW IT WORKS:
- A feral cat colony (a group of cats living outdoors together) is identified and targeted.
- The cats in the colony are trapped utilizing humane methods and proven safety techniques.
- The cats are transported to a clinic for spay/neuter surgery and rabies vaccination.
- The cats have their left ear “tipped” for easy identification as “fixed.”
- The "fixed" and vaccinated cats are returned to their colony within 24-48 hours.
- Volunteers feed and care for the cat colony on an ongoing daily basis.
The above information is courtesy of Humane Alliance.