MCFH S7E7 - FERAL CATS FREEZING, TNR, DO-IT-YOURSELF CAT HOUSES
Show: My Cat From Hell Season 7, Episode 7
Episode Title: Gotham Feral Cats
Cats: Feral Cat Colony
There are about ten feral cats in this colony, and none of them are spayed or neutered.
Guardians: Terry and his son, Scott
Terry and Scott are living in Staten Island, New York and have been feeding the feral cats in their backyard for the past four years. They dedicate their free time to the cats, and Terry says they even help lower his blood pressure.
How Bad Is It?
These cats are probably not going to make it through another ice-cold New York winter. Most of the litters of kittens have died because of the harsh weather; Terry and Scott recently found a cat that had frozen to death, which was extremely heartbreaking.
- Feral cats need to be spayed and neutered using TNR (Trap-Neuter-Return).
- Adequate shelter must be provided for the cats to survive another winter.
- Having a hard time trapping the male cat that gets the others pregnant; needs to be neutered.
When dealing with a feral cat community that needs to be controlled, using TNR (Trap, Neuter, and Return) is the most effective way to prevent future litters from being born.
In addition, TNR reduces the chance of the feral cats getting into fights due to territorial issues and prevents disease from being spread. Not only should the cats be spayed and neutered, they should also be de-flead and vaccinated. Feral cats only have a small window of time to be domesticated, and once this short period passes, they are virtually unadoptable due to their fear of humans. This means they will have to live outside in the community, so it’s a good idea to provide adequate shelter, especially in regions with harsh weather. A great resource for TNR and feral cat education in New York is NYC Feral Cat Initiative. Alley Cat Allies is the national organization that helped introduce TNR. Here are their guidelines for humane trapping and TNR, including links to help find and connect with local TNR and feral cat support in your community.
You can build your own DIY feral cat houses by purchasing large plastic storage containers and cutting out an entrance and exit hole for the cat. Add styrofoam to the walls of the container for insulation, put straw on the floor, and place the house on pieces of wood to keep it off of the cold ground.
Here’s a video Jackson filmed of Jenny Schlueter, Feral Friends TNR Program Manager in Chicago, about How to Take Care of Feral Cat Colonies During Winter.
You should stop feeding the cats at least 24 hours before you plan on trapping them because hungry cats are easier to trap! Once the traps are set up, you will place food inside to lure the cats in. If you live in a cold climate, try using plate warmers to prevent the food from freezing, and further entice them towards the warm food. Once you begin trapping cats, keep a close eye to make sure you catch all of them, especially those that are causing most of the litters to be born. In this case, a cat named Puff Puff seemed to be impregnating most of the female cats, and he was also the hardest to catch. In the end, all ten cats were trapped, spayed/neutered, and returned back to their community safely.
Taking care of a feral cat colony can be extremely difficult. Neighbors may consider the cats a nuisance, resulting in little or no community help or support. It is hard work to trap all of the cats and get them TNR’d, but once the colony is under control, things should get easier. You won’t see new litters of kittens popping up in the warmer months, which means less homeless cats. This was a relief for Terry and Scott, who were devastated after realizing that kittens were freezing to death because of the extremely low temperatures.
IN ADDITION TO THE ABOVE, JACKSON ALSO USED SPIRIT ESSENCES:
Feral Flower Formula
Feral cats usually lead a life of uncertainty and high stress; whether just trapping, neutering and returning them, or attempting to socialize to humans, Feral Flower Formula can be helpful. Feral Flower Formula is designed to help feral cats overcome their fears and moderate their naturally sensitive fight-or-flight response. By lowering their stress, FFF can also help facilitate the process of domestication, and allow them to accept and reciprocate attention and affection from people. Note: not all feral cats are receptive to domestication; there will be those that will not respond. In that case, FFF can at the very least help those cats navigate their world with an increased sense of territorial confidence. Jackson made sure to mist Feral Flower Formula in the feral cat houses, traps, around their eating area, and even in the van that was used to transport the cats to the vet. Jackson also made sure that Terry and Scott added drops of Feral Flower Formula to the food and water before each feeding.
EVERY PET IS DIFFERENT, AND HAS DIFFERENT NEEDS AND HEALING RESPONSES. SOME OTHER POSSIBLE SPIRIT ESSENCES SOLUTIONS THAT MAY BE HELPFUL IN THIS TYPE OF SITUATION ARE:
Spay/Neuter is formulated to help restore and rebalance the male/female energies that are unavoidably disrupted by the procedure, as any surgery disrupts the body's energy fields. This solution specifically addresses the imbalances caused by sterilization, whether surgical or chemical. You can begin administering this formula to an animal the night before his surgery, and continue for about two weeks after the procedure.
Stress Stopper is formulated to help animals adapt and cope with stressful situations, such as thunderstorms, boarding, remodeling, visitors, or similar situations. This formula is designed to help animals feel grounded and protected during periods of short-term stress. Stress Stopper can help to reduce any stress that cats go through during the process of TNR – being trapped and visiting the vet for a spay/neuter procedure.
Jackson Galaxy's Spirit Essences™ work best when part of a more holistic program, that may include proper veterinary care, diet, behavior modification, and other holistic modalities. Consult your veterinarian before adding any new product to your pet’s care regimen. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.