T: TNR (Trap-Neuter-Return)
Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) programs are making their way across the nations. Cities one by one are beginning to adopt programs such as this to help maintain feral cat populations.
What is a TNR program? Alley Cat Allies describes it like this:
Feral cats are domestic cats. Like pet cats. The difference is that feral cats have had little or no contact with humans, and so they are fearful of us and cannot be adopted. They have a home—the outdoors.
And, there is a simple way you can help them: Trap-Neuter-Return. This program ends reproduction, stabilizes feral cat populations, and improves individual cats’ lives. The behaviors and stresses associated with mating— pregnancy, yowling, and fighting—stop.
What is Trap-Neuter-Return?
Trap: Humanely trap all of the cats in a colony (a group of cats living outdoors together).
Neuter: Take the cats in their traps to a veterinarian or clinic to be neutered, vaccinated, and eartipped (a universal symbol indicating they have been neutered).
Return: Return the cats to their original outdoor home.
Of course, as with most programs that require changes, even if it’s mostly a change of habits, there are advocates that see the benefits and there are those dissenting folks. TNR programs get both. Pet Meds discusses the pros and cons here.
What do you think of TNR programs? Do you think they’ll help the escalating problem?