National Feral Cat Day
October 16, 2013
When Alley Cats Allies created the National Feral Cat Day over a decade ago, I had my first experience with a feral cat rescue. I was in need of a cat, so I, like many others, went to the Internet. As I live in a rural community, my choices were few and far between. Then, as if by magic, I found the cat rescue which would later rescue me, as well.
As it turned out, the founder needed a resident writer, and I needed an outlet for my writing. Voila`! All needs were met. It was then that I learned about feral cats and the handling of their kittens, with the help of such organizations as Alley Cats Allies.
The differences between pet cats, feral cats and stray cats have to do with the interactions with humans. Feral cats have little or no contact with humans, and therefore, have little trust in people. As a result, they often can thrive in the outdoors and most often will not be people-friendly. Strays once had contact with humans, but were either abandoned or strayed from home. Some strays can overcome their fear of humans and will once again become pets.
Alley Cats Allies founded the National Feral Cat Day to educate the public about the feral cats in their own communities. The feral population was growing by leaps and bounds across the nation, and it was with this problem in mind that this special day was initiated.
Instructions on T-N-R programs were made available nationwide. T-N-R or trap-neuter-return procedures include humane ways to handle feral cats. First, trap them in a cage-like enclosure that will in no way injure the animal. Then, take them to the vet for disease control and neutering. The third part of T-N-R is equally important. Adult feral cats are less likely to be made people-friendly, so the most humane way of handling them is to return them safely to their familiar colony or territory. Kittens, however, can be trained and adopted out to good homes.
This year’s theme for National Feral Cat Day is Architects for Change for Cats. Our hats are off to Alley Cats Allies for, once again, coming to these precious creatures’ aide. Whether they be feral cats or pets, they are all worthy of our love and attention.
*If you require further information on Alley Cats Allies, please click Alley Cat Allies.