Trap-neuter-release program – I am so happy to tell you that Ste-Anne’s has now signed a contract with the SPCA for the “TNR” program, (trap, neuter, release) this is not a “Trap and Kill” program, totally the opposite. The main purpose of this project is to stop the reproduction of the ferols and ultimately give them a better quality of life.
The animals, with the help of the community, are trapped early in the morning, 6:00 am and are transported to the spca, and will either be neutered or spayed. They will also receive a basic shot and will be dewormed. BIG relief for these animals. They will also come back with a “V” snipped out of the tip of one ear, this is totally painless to the animal, and it is to help us recognize the ones that have gone through the program. They will get a shot of pain medication, because they are being released the same day, this will help get them through a little discomfort . The animals that are sick, the veterinarian will make the decision on whether they will come back or not. The cat or cats will be returned late afternoon. The males, since the weather is warm, and do not have an open incision, will not have to be fostered. However, the females that are spayed will need time to heal, as their stomachs are shaved, we do not want infection, so they need to stay in for approx 4 or 5 days. This is a monitoring time, just to make sure they are on the right track and are eating well.
I, however do ask the people who are feeding the ferols where we trapped them, to please just keep an eye on them when they come for food. They should be fine, but if you notice anything out of the ordinary, you can get in touch with me, and I will come and make sure the animal isn’t in any kind of distress. Now that the cats have been dewormed, if you could continue to feed them, this will give them an opportunity to put a little fat on them before the winter. No parasites means healthier animal. They won’t need to hunt for food if we all continue to feed them.
Jade Marcoux, Customer Service Director, Montreal SPCA, and one of my go to people there, states, “TNR and Abandonment” are unfortunately linked together, and those cats left behind,are part of the over population of outdoor cats. They often reproduce and end up in a very bad situation as they are not outdoor savvy or at least not as much as ferol cats. We are in urgent need of cities and municipalities involvement to help prevent abandonment, and support the different citizens in their needs for resources to keep their pets at home. i.e. sterilization costs, health costs, etc.
I myself am reaching out to John Abbott College and McGill, to help educate the out of town students, and students who are now renting apartments in Ste-Anne’s, to please, not get kittens when they move in. I totally understand where the student’s are coming from, first apartment, out on their own, let’s get a pet, I’m not far from the truth. However, do they see down the road when they graduate. I am assuming that a lot, think, cats are resilient and can just go out and catch dinner anytime they want. Well, to some extent that is true, but on the other hand, these animals have been cared for since they were adopted, thinking they were in a forever home. They have had food and water on a regular basis, they have had love by the person who, down the road will leave them alone, and scared on the streets of Ste-Anne’s. They will be beaten by the ferols who have already claimed territory. Tell me, where doe’s the resilience come into play. I would also like to remind anyone who is going to dump their animals, it is a Criminal Offense , and there are laws that are in place to protect them.
The animals that have gone through this program are doing really quite well. St.Jean Baptiste and corner of St. Thomas streets which had at least 12 ferols ,two of the females were spayed, one was actually adopted, she was actually friendly enough to re-adapt to domestic. The other female would have nothing to do with rehabilitation, but she lives where she grew up and is looking quite healthy. These females alone produced many, many, kittens. Of course a lot didn’t survive, but the ones that did, went on to reproduce. Now the only cats you’ll see on the corner of St.Thomas, are the males that were neutered and of course people’s pets. These animals have shelters and are fed everyday. They can live there lives without fighting, injury, infections, and disease. The males stop spraying for territory, which really pleases a lot of people who are trying to grow nice flower gardens. So all in all everyone is happy. I would like to thank the town council of Ste-Anne’s, and especially Chief of Security Mr.Alain Dupuis, who with his kind heart and generosity made this project possible.
Lastly, we really need the people of Ste-Anne’s to tell us if they are feeding ferols and where they are located. The ones we have already trapped are ones that we knew about, now we need help to find others because without help, these animals will still go through a horrible winter if they don’t get help. We also need volunteers to help transport the cats to the spca , we have only one driver as to date and we sure could use the help in that area. It would only be once or twice a week as it stands right now. We will only be trapping until November, so the more we can get in before than, the better. Please COLLAR your cats, we do not want to go through taking your cat down to the spca, just to find out it is a domestic. You can help us by identify yours. Also, we certainly could use donations of food, wet and dry, and we need shelters for these animals. I remember last winter, December was brutal, and most of these cats had no warm place to go. It takes a lot of energy for these cats to keep warm and without food and shelter it’s all most impossible to make it. Thank you for your help.
Valerie Brecknock -Animal Behaviorist
Please e-mail me at: firstname.lastname@example.org