Feral Cat Stories
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Feral Cats: Trap-Neuter-Release
For the last 10 years, TEARS Animal Rescue has supported the feral cats in the Western Cape with a clinic that sterilises on the basis of TNR (Trap-Neuter-Return).
Stray or feral cats are humanely trapped and taken to the TEARS Clinic to be sterilised and vaccinated against Rabies. After recovery, they are then released back to their colonies. All of the cats and kittens who are friendly are assessed to see whether they can be socialised and tamed and put up for adoption at the Shelter.
Trap-Neuter-Return is a humane and effective approach for controlling stray and feral cats from over-population. The project supports and improves the lives of feral cats and decreases the numbers of unwanted cats being born on the streets. This has been successfully practised for the last 10 years.
Scientific evidence proves that removing of feral cats colonies only opens up the area of habitat to an influx of new cats from the neighbourhood. As cats are removed, the population will rebound through a natural phenomenon known as the ‘vacuum effect.’
TEARS Feral Cat Project strongly advise all community members to consider the following when being faced with a problem regarding feral cats:
1. TNR will reduce the numbers of cats – as the population cannot produce it will then stabilise and eventually decline over time.
2. After sterilisation the general health of the cats are improved. The cats are relieved from constant stresses of mating and pregnancy. It improves the coat condition and they will gain good weight over time.
3. Relationships with the community changes due the cats becoming quieter as there will be no more mating behaviour which means the yowling, roaming, spraying and fighting stops between the cats. With decreased competition for mating, they will be less likely to suffer from injuries.
4. Vaccination of rabies will reduce the spread of infectious diseases amongst community owned cats. This is done when TNR is practised.