72% of all Cats that enter shelters and pounds are killed

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Yes, you read that right. And did you know that the killings within Animal control, pounds and shelters are the leading cause of death for cats in the United States. These organizations hide behind the term "Euthanasia" but Euthanasia refers to the practice of intentionally ending a life in order to relieve pain and suffering yet most animals who die in pounds and shelters are killed for very different reasons, most having nothing to do with their health at all. Comprehensive studies show that 23% are adopted and only 2% are returned to their original owners.
For feral cats, the kill rate in pounds and shelters rises to 100%. These cats have no social skills outside their colonies with humans, adult ferals are almost always too wild to even consider trying to tame them so a chance of being adopted is very unlikely and there is no original owner to claim. The only option these cats face once they enter these facilities is death.

Many people assume that feral cats always suffer living outdoors but this is just not the case, they are not disease prone nor do they pose any health risk to humans. Studies have proven that only 1% of feral cats brought into shelters and pounds are euthanized do to illness or disease.

It's important for everyone to realize these numbers before making that choice of calling Animal Control when they have an issue with feral or stray cats. Most of us have this first reaction to seeing cats living outdoors on their own and it's usually feeling sorry for them that they don't have homes....but they do have homes...they are home.

So the next time you see cats living outside and you feel they need your help...think about it first, what is it that you think they need. If the cat is ill and needs medical attention then by all means get some help but be careful who you call. There are feral organizations almost everywhere now, take a moment, look into it, call the right people because if you call Animal Control, or take the cat to a shelter, the cat will die.

Remember the numbers 72% of all cats, 100% of Feral Cats.


 Feral Friends Network

 Feral Cat Veterinary Resource Center

 Care for Cats







1

I Don’t Choose to Feel the Way I Feel


With so many people just going through life never giving a second thought to the rights or well being of an animal, I can’t help but wonder why I was born to think so much.
At times it almost feels like a curse because the heartache I feel for those who are suffering is overwhelming but I cannot ignore how I feel or always explain it.

I don’t know why I seem to be the only one in the car who is holding back tears when I see a dead animal along side the road or why the sound of a gunshot in the distance during deer season makes my stomach hurt.

I don’t like chasing after the dogs trying to get a dead rat out of their mouth, to some it would be pointless considering the rat is already dead but for me it’s a respect for the dead animal and I don’t know why I feel this way.

I’m not sure why I choose to stand guard when the dogs have chased a squirrel up a tree or under a wood pile making sure the squirrel gets away safely, I just do it, even if it means I stand guard for the better part of my morning.

I don’t understand my insistence of saving my cats natural prey, spending two hours trying to save a lizard that has found his way into our house of five cats.

I don’t know how I can reach down and pick up a large wild rat that my cats have cornered in our kitchen and carry it to safer ground, I never even gave it a thought while others stood there looking at me like I was crazy.

I don’t know why it doesn’t bother me to syringe feed a cat who is sick and has no appetite or clean up a mess that the dog has made in the hallway because she has an upset tummy.

When a friend calls and says a dog she knows is getting ready to be taken to the pound because he doesn’t have a home. I am not sure why I would get in my car at 9pm and drive 40 miles to get him. I didn’t know the dog, I do now, his name is Petey and he lives next door.

And then at a different time do it again because that same friend knew a black cat that was in trouble and needed help. I picked him up and named him Roo.

I don’t know why I would spend a month of my time rehabilitating a praying mantis who got caught in a web and broke his leg or why I feel the need to rescue caterpillars who get caught in early storms..

I don’t know why it is so important to me to trap feral cats so they can get fixed and then released back into the wild.

Animals are just a natural part of my existence I wouldn’t know how to act if I didn’t have five sets of little paws following me from room to room. And how would I ever get a thing done without their help? And the cat hair on my clothes, on the couch, in my nose, I would end up having allergies or something without it.

Animals make my life rich….they make me smile when I really don’t want to smile.

I don’t choose to feel the way I feel, I just feel it. Some think I am crazy to spend so much time and energy doing what I do but I am not really doing anything but being me.
It’s not easy to always care which I suspect is the reason most people turn their heads but for me turning away would hurt so much more than helping. I guess it comes down to what we as individuals can live with.

I know there are many people in this world who feel the way I do but on an average day when I look around, I feel small, alone in this fight as I watch others just look away
And though at times, it seems it would be easier to not care I know in my heart that life is not about how easy it is to get through.
It’s not easy at all.
But the rewards are endless.

Hearing them purr.
Watching them play.
Knowing their tummies are full.
Seeing them live their lives the way that they were meant to live.

I cannot change the world, I cannot save them all, I am only one girl.

But I can absolutely make sure that the animals that come into my life will have a voice, they will have their rights upheld. These are not rights I give them; these are the rights they were born with, that we were all born with.

We all breathe air, we all bleed red, we all feel, we all fear.

No, I cannot save them all but just saving one matters.

Some have asked what I get out of all of this…my answer is simple.

I can sleep at night.


1

To the Feral Cat Trapper Know it All



   Recently, I contacted a few organizations about a feral cat that has been living under my friend Sandy's house. The cat was in need of medical attention and Sandy wasn't in a situation where she could fund it at the time. So I sent out some emails explaining the situation....Sandy wasn't looking to get rid of the cat, she didn't mind the cat at all. She was unable to touch him, he didn't seem very tame but she didn't mind him being there and she was ok with feeding him. The problem was that the cat had an eye issue and it's fur was all matted and he generally just looked miserable despite being fed. Sandy doesn't have a lot of experience with feral cats so she of course turned to me since I have worked with the TNR (trap and return) programs for many years. The only problem is that Sandy lives in the Sacramento Valley and I live in the Sierra Foothills. It's not as far as it sounds but far enough that I just can’t jump in my car and be at her house in a few minutes, it's about a 45 minute drive. Sandy had never trapped a cat before so she wasn't really up for that part of it, I knew we would need help. Let me back track by saying that Sandy had just recently moved into that house and this cat and another were already there. At that time we believed that the cats were left by prior tenants.
So anyway, I put all of this info in the emails I sent out asking for some help in trapping the cat and getting its medical needs met. I and hoped for the best. Well, the next day a lovely lady from one of the organizations got back to me and she was going to try and help. This person was very kind, very understanding and really wanted to help. She said that she would have to send out a message across the board that a trapper was needed and then we would go from there. Well she found us a trapper all right. LOL She told me that the trapper lady would call and she did.
What happened next really just pisses me off and I wish I could go back and handle it so many other ways than how I handled it, but I can't so here I rant...
This had to be the rudest woman on the face of the planet; she kicked the conversation off with a straight lecture. She would not allow me to answer with anything but a yes or a no, every time I would try to explain anything she cut me off and start lecturing again. She was explaining to me how Sandy needed to trap this cat, giving me the run down on how it is done. I tried a few times to tell her that I knew how to trap the cat and that I even have my own trap cage. The cage part got her attention and she seemed a bit confused as to why I would have one but wouldn't stop talking down her nose at me long enough to find out why. She then asked me if the cat was starving and I told her no, that Sandy would never allow this cat to starve and that she feeds him everyday. This woman then goes into attack mode telling me that Sandy cannot feed the cat because the cat needs to be hungry so we can trap it. Really? That wasn't her question. She then proceeds to tell me how Sandy needs to do the "responsible thing". What? At this point I am very irritated with this woman. I tell her that a neuter may not be necessary because....and she cuts me off. She tells me that Sandy is being very irresponsible. I really tried to explain to this lady that the cat appears to have already been neutered or is just too old to be interested in the opposite sex because after observing his behavior for quite some time, he is not on the prowl, nor is he aggressive towards other male cats and the other male cats are not aggressive towards him either. I wanted to explain to her that I could be wrong about this, that his illness could also be the reason he is so passive but she would not allow me to say anything.
After ending this completely bizarre conversation, Sandy and I decided to not take this cat to her. Instead we treated the cat with antibiotics that I always have on hand for emergencies. The cat is doing wonderful and looks better than ever. And come to find out, he was abandoned years ago but not intentionally, his owner died and he is neutered.
I am not going to give any names of any organization here because one bad apple does not spoil the bunch. On a whole these organizations do more good than they ever do bad. I have total appreciation for all animal rescue groups and I will continue to turn to them when I need help with my own rescue efforts.

The message that I have now is for the lady I spoke to on the phone that night....

My friend Sandy is the kindest, most caring individual I have ever met. When she moved into that house and those cats were there, she never blinked an eye, she just started buying more cat food. Most people would have "gotten rid" of them, Sandy didn't do that. She noticed one of them was sick and she called me for help. I think her actions were completely responsible considering the fact that it wasn't her cat to begin with. She has since medicated this little guy, cut mats from his hair and has become this animals savior....He is now thriving and she is keeping him. There was another cat on her property, a little girl cat. sandy has taken her in and she is now spayed and up to date with her shots and she is also keeping her. Responsible? Absolutely.
Here is a tip for ya, if someone is calling a rescue group for help, that IS being responsible. I know you work with animals everyday but I really think you need to work on those people skills because if you continue to treat people like pieces of doo doo you will only alienate them and they won't want to call again and this is just not in the best interest of the cats you claim to want to help. Not everyone is "cat lady", I don't care how many you have encountered.
I called for help and I got you, obviously we have a common interest, we want to help these cats that need our help so badly. We are in this together lady; we are on the same side.

Ok, I am done now, rant over.

It's not usually this difficult to help, this rude lady I talked to recently is the first I have ever dealt with and I have been doing this a long time, many years. The most important thing that you can do is not look away. They need our help.
So this post is not just about me ranting, here are some links to the best feral resources I have encountered over the years and some other animal related links that I have found to be truly wonderful and informative.

Alley Cat Allies: The Cats' Leading Advocate
Placer SPCA
Happy Tails
Tabby's Place (Inspirational)
Sierra Animal Wellness Center
Petfinder
Feral Cat Coalition
Humane Trapping Instructions



Trap-Neuter-Return Works



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