Fix-a-Feral

November 2019

Due to a gift from a long time supporter and friend of Last Hope, we will be able to offer our  low-cost spay-neuter vouchers this year through our FixAFerAl Program into January 2020.  Now is the time to spay and neuter those feral cats you are feeding. Breeding season slows down briefly until late January.  Let’s hit the problem right now! Click here to get your vouchers.  Pease do not request vouchers unless you plan on using them within the next two months and adhere to the rules outlined. We would appreciate it if other rescues would not use this voucher program as it is intended to assist the resident feral cat caretakers on Long Island.

Feral cats have reached epidemic numbers on Long Island.  In 2003, LAST HOPE initiated its FIX-A-  FERAL” program as an incentive to get you, the public, to trap,spay/neuter,return  (TNR) the feral cats that you are feeding.   These cats must be returned to the location where they are trapped.   It is important to TNR every cat in the colony.  You must commit to feeding these cats for their lifetime – feeding out of dumpsters is not an acceptable food source.  If you are able, we also recommend providing some shelter for the feral cats.  Please refer to the  Alley Cat Allies website, www.alleycat.org, for more information about TNR and caring for feral cats

Once we have received your completed agreement, we will mail the vouchers to you.   Please allow 7 -10 days for processing. No more than five (5) vouchers will be issued per household and no more than ten (10) vouchers will be issued to a trapper unless special arrangements have been made.  In other words, a trapper can get up to 5 vouchers for 2 different households.  They must be used by the expiration date printed on the voucher. Expired vouchers will not be replaced. The vets will check that the name on the voucher matches your photo ID.  Faxed or photo copies will not  be accepted by any of the vets.

IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT THE PAPERWORK OR TRAPPING, PLEASE CONTACT US THRU OUR WEBSITE.  A VOLUNTEER WILL GET BACK TO YOU AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

DOWNLOAD APPLICATION HERE

Trapping Information and Instructions

  1. There are only ONE humane solution for the feral cat:

TNR – TRAP, NEUTER AND RETURN.  If you are committed to feeding these cats on a daily basis (cat food, not table scraps!!) and the environment in which they are living is relatively safe, they can be easily trapped, neutered and returned to the environment which they know.  They will be happier outdoors than cooped up in a house where they will most likely hide all day and prowl at night.  If time, finances, and space permit, you may want to set up some outdoor shelter for these animals in the winter.  Straw makes an excellent bed.  Cats like small, dry spaces into which they can nestle.  Check out Alley Cat Allies – www.alleycat.org for help with care of feral cats.

  1. MATERIALS, there are 5 items required for trapping feral cats:
  2. A trap (“TOMAHAWK” or “HAVE-A-HEART”). Tomahawks may be purchased via Tomahawk Live Trap Company, P.O. Box 323, Tomahawk, Wisconsin 54487.  Phone: (800) 272-8727 or livetrap.com.   They cost about $60.00.  You should order trap #606NC  (cat transfer trap with sliding door).  Have-A–Heart traps without a sliding door  are available at Agway and Home Depot.
  3. Bait (tuna in oil, sardines or mackerel, the smellier the better);
  4. Towel or sheet – to cover the trap after a cat is captured
  5. Flashlight – for night-time trapping
  6. Patience and Fortitude – Never stop trapping until you are absolutely certain every cat has been trapped. There are always more cats residing in an area than you see.

PROCEDURE

  1. One week prior to trapping, notify your neighbors of your intentions to trap. Ask them to tag their household cats or keep them indoors.
  2. Establish a feeding pattern – feed at the same time, and the same place every day. This will ensure that the cats will be where you want them, when you want them.
  3. It is important to make arrangements first. Have your vouchers in hand and make an appointment if required. DO NOT trap a cat and then start looking for someplace to bring it or someone to take it!
  4. Do not feed the cats for a day, and then set the trap. If they are extra hungry, you have a greater chance of getting them to go into the trap.  Set the trap with tuna, sardines or mackerel – something very smelly.  Having a trap with a sliding back door is especially helpful in releasing an animal that you did not want to trap.   DO NOT EVER ATTEMPT TO PICK UP OR TOUCH A FERAL CAT.
  5. When you have trapped the animal, cover the trap with a towel or sheet to calm the animal. Even tame cats panic when trapped.  However, they do quiet down when covered.  DO NOT LEAVE THE TRAP SET OVERNIGHT OR UNATTENDED.  Trapped cats can be left in the trap overnight as long as they are covered and in a safe secure place, i.e. garage, shed, basement, etc., protected from dogs and other wildlife.
  6. Cats can be transported to the veterinarian or animal shelter in the trap. Put a piece of plastic (a garbage bag works well) under the trap as some cats may urinate out of fear and stress.
  7. Our participating vets will notch the cat’s left ear (ear tipping) when the cat is under anesthesia. This alerts others that this cat has been spayed or neutered already.
  8. Often males can be released within 12 hours after surgery, ask the veterinarian about this. Females should be held at least 72 hours after surgery during the winter.  Have a cage available for this purpose; cats cannot be left in the trap for any length of time.  Please remember, these cats do not understand what you are trying to do, they just feel trapped and threatened and they may become hostile, so exercise caution at all times.    If using a cage, lining it with newspapers makes it easier to clean.  You will need a litter box and dishes for water and food. Put a small cat carrier in the cage…most cats will hide in it, making releasing the cat easier.

After the appropriate recovery time, transport the cat back to the release site.  Open the door of the carrier, step back, and they will just run out.  They probably won’t even stop to thank you.

 

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