From No One’s Cat to Everyone’s Cat!
It is estimated there are more than 1.5 billion cats in the United States. Almost half of those are stray, free roaming or feral. While more than 85 percent of pet cats are spayed or neutered, only about 2 percent of free roaming cats are spayed and neutered accounting for 80 percent of all newborn kittens annually!
Considering cats can reproduce at 4 to 5 months of age and can also have as many as three litters per year, it’s no wonder there are so many cats on the street and in shelters! We simply cannot adopt our way out of the situation.
Unfortunately, more than 70 percent of cats that enter shelters are killed. The outlook is even more dismal for feral cats or free-roaming “community cats” that are not suitable for adoption into homes. Virtually 100 percent of these cats that enter shelters are killed.
This ineffective, costly and inhumane approach to managing free roaming community cats has been proven not to reduce the number of cats as other unaltered cats move in to the territory and again breed to capacity. This outdated “catch and kill” method is being replaced steadily with more progressive community cat programs based on the trap-neuter-return (TNR) method of population management. This has proven to be the most effective at reducing the numbers of these cats, reducing shelter admissions and shelter deaths, saving taxpayers’ money and providing a public health benefit to the community. TNR stabilizes and eventually reduces cat populations and makes them good neighbors. It also offers shelters and community members a more humane, guilt free approach to managing cat overpopulation in a community. In fact, a national survey recently showed 81 percent of people believe fixing and leaving a community cat outdoors is preferable to having him or her caught and euthanized!
CATNIP Foundation at Big Sky Ranch is committed to changing these numbers and advocates for a trap-neuter-return approach to humanely managing community cats. Embracing this solution to end overpopulation and needless killing, free-roaming cats are trapped, spayed or neutered and returned to their original locations. Kittens and cats that can be socialized are adopted into homes as companions and pets. In unfortunate cases where neither of these is possible, appropriate, alternative homes as “working cats” are found through our “Rescue Ranches” Barn Cat/Working Cat program. While this may seem like a new concept, we can trace the first instances of cats living in and providing service to communities as far back as 10,000 years ago. In the early days of agriculture, cats preyed on the rodents attracted to stored grain. Over the centuries, cats came to form mutually beneficial relationships with people and became especially prized as mousers. Cats boarded ships from Europe tagging along with Christopher Columbus, the settlers at Jamestown and aboard the Mayflower. Cats continued their service as mousers throughout history—even serving as official employees of the United States Postal Service as late as the early 20th century. Today we find “working cats” anywhere rodent control might be needed—barns, farms, restaurants, wharfs, warehouses, breweries or even your backyard chicken coop.
If you would like to save a couple of lives and put a trained mouser to work for you, contact us today to adopt your Working Cat!!
• Spay or neuter your own cats before they can
reproduce at 4 to 5 months of age.
• Adopt your next pet from a rescue that
• Volunteer to socialize feral kittens.
• Become a community cat caretaker.
• Become an advocate for Community Cats— educate your neighbors and community about outdoor cats.
• Visit, like and share the information and
videos on our Facebook page.
• Donate to the TNR fund at CATNIP Foundation
at Big Sky Ranch.
Dr. Catherine Wilbert, CEO CATNIP Foundation at Big Sky Ranch CATNIP (Care And Treatment of Neglected and Indigent Pets) Foundation at Big Sky Ranch is a 501(c)3 non profit Animal Rescue, based in Folsom. 985-276-0270, bigskyranch.org, [email protected].[huge_it_gallery id=”13″]