some feral cat news 08-09-06
Group helps feral cats
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, New York - August 9, 2006
(August 9, 2006) — Habitat for Cats Inc. began in 1999 to help control the skyrocketing population of feral and homeless cats in Monroe County.The volunteer group of 42 members traps, then spays or neuters the cats, returning them to the area they were trapped.
The group tries to find homes for any kittens it traps.Veterinarian Mary Dyroff of Webster volunteers her time performing the procedures every Wednesday on any trapped cats.
Diane DeGravio of Webster is president of the group and helps in the trapping process.Since May 2005, the group has spayed or neutered more than 900 cats.
National statistics show that two uncontrolled breeding cats will produce 2,201 cats in a four-year period. That number swells to more than 73,000 over six years.
Palm Beach reviving feral cat plan
Palm Beach Post Florida - August 9, 2006
By Tim O'Meilia
Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
PALM BEACH — Two things Palm Beachers don't want in town — yowling, unfixed feral cats and growling, unfilled Palm Tran buses north of Publix.
They don't like them so much that the town council Tuesday voted to spend $150,000 to resuscitate a nonprofit feral cat management program and asked Palm Tran to cut nearly half its routes to the north end of town.
"Our residents aren't happy with these buses," said Councilwoman Susan Markin, who was also unhappy that Palm Tran publishes maps "advertising our Publix, which as far as we're concerned is for our residents."
Palm Tran surveys shows an average of 21 riders per hour on its three morning and four evening trips on Route 41 from West Palm Beach across the Royal Park Bridge and north to the Lake Worth Inlet. But fewer than half of the passengers travel north of the Publix on Sunset Avenue in midtown.
Route 42 through the south end of town averages only seven passengers per hour, the second-lowest of all routes in the county, and is likely to be cut in the fall.
Councilman Allen Wyett suggested residents could pick up their domestic help at midtown. Councilman Bill Brooks proposed that Palm Tran use vans.
"We'll supply the vans, you supply the driver," Council President Denis Coleman told Palm Tran officials.
Palm Tran Executive Director Chuck Cohen said the agency could consider eliminating one of the morning and two evening trips, leaving two in the morning and two in the evening. Palm Beach routes were cut in half two years ago.
The council unanimously asked that Palm Tran consider eliminating service north of Publix or reduce the trips to one in the morning and one in the evening. They also asked that stops be removed from Seminole Avenue.
As for the feral cats, the council backed away from discussions of exporting the cats out of town because of the cost and of euthanasia.
Well-known animal rights supporter Gertrude Maxwell, founder of Sav-A-Pet, said she opposes euthanasia but would contribute $20,000 to the trap-neuter-release program that is foundering.
"Private donations will dry up if you resort to euthanasia and relocation," warned resident Vicki Hunt, who has agreed to become a board member for PB Cats Inc., the nonprofit group struggling for money. Markin will also serve on the board.
The $175,000 will be doled out in three increments, but the council wants the group to put a new board in place, hire an administrative head, a field manager and four part-time feeders. Now, the agency runs with a manager and two feeders.
PB Cats must also do more fund-raising ($40,000 last year) and have better bookkeeping. The council will reevaluate the program in January.
"I have a solution for the feral cats," said Seminole Road resident Herbert Hoffman last month. "Put them on the Palm Tran buses. You'll never see them again."
Council panel kills animal trap lending plan
Bangor Daily News, Maine - Aug 8, 2006
BANGOR - After taking another look at the issue, city officials decided Monday that they really did not want to get into the live animal trap lending business.Monday's discussion was a follow-up to a City Council subcommittee's decision last fall to authorize the purchase of up to 10 such traps for use by residents.Councilors were looking at a lending policy for the traps when they decided against making the traps available at all. Though authorized, the purchase of traps had not occurred."I don't think the city wants to be in charge of trapping any animal," Councilor Susan Hawes, who chaired the meeting, said.Councilor Geoffrey Gratwick said he arrived at the meeting prepared to support the program, largely because of what woodchucks have done to his garden. He instead decided to oppose it after hearing more about the pros and cons, in particular the strain it would put on the city's already strapped police and animal control personnel."It may not be an issue we want to be involved in," Gratwick said. "The city has limits on what it can do for people."Resident Kenneth Buckley, who came to City Hall to oppose the traps, said it appeared to him that the city's feral cat problem had been exaggerated and that making the traps available to the general public would lead to "vigilante catnapping."Asked for his take on the matter, Police Chief Don Winslow recommended against it."Obviously, the police department has plenty to do," Winslow said, adding that the animal control division also was busy."Are we going to be everything to everybody?" Winslow echoed Councilor Gerry Palmer's concerns about the traps leading to neighborhood disputes. He also was worried about what people would do once they actually caught animals."There's no guarantee that people are going to do what they are supposed to do when they trap an animal, and I'm not sure we want to be part of that," he said.The council's finance committee agreed to buy the traps last fall in response to a resident's complaints about feral cats, though the traps also could be used to catch skunks, woodchucks and other animals.After reviewing several options for dealing with the city's stray cats last fall, the council's finance committee authorized the purchase of up to 10 live animal traps for use by residents. While the traps, which cost about $60 each, would not have helped reduce Bangor's feral cat population, they were the least costly of three alternatives city officials weighed in response to the resident's concern about homeless felines.The other options called for encouraging residents to trap and transport feral cats, immunizing and spaying or neutering those animals young enough to be domesticated and euthanizing the rest, at a cost of almost $50,000 a year. Another option, which would have added at least $148,260 to the city budget, called for managed colonies of wild cats. This would have required that the cats be caught, given health screenings and immunized and spayed or neutered if not diseased. Diseased cats would be euthanized
Enlist volunteers to curb feral cat population
Roanoke Times, Virginia - Aug 6, 2006
I have volunteered at the Roanoke's Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals for more than a year. It does not euthanize animals as was reported in the July 27 news article, "Feral cats: Rubbing people the wrong way?"
The Animal Control Shelter next door to the SPCA does. The SPCA Adoption Center saves many animals from death by transferring adoptable animals from the ACS.
They are fixed, vaccinated and examined by the staff vet and available for adoption until they find a good home.
Feral cats and stray dogs are a symptom of irresponsible owners .
Roanoke's animal control officer Mike Quesenberry is right. An aggressive public education program is key so that the public knows low-cost spay/neuter clinics like Angels of Assisi exist and are affordable.
An aggressive spay/neuter program will drastically reduce the number of unwanted kittens. Enlisting the expertise and help of area feral cat rescuers should also be considered.
I never heard about the committee to resolve this problem.
Aggressive public service announcements on the radio, TV and in the newspaper would generate a number of concerned animal lovers who want to help. Where do I sign up?