Saturday, January 3, 2015

January 2015

2014 Year in Review

WOW! 2014 was a busy year! Below are some 2014 statistics on my own trapping:

Total # cats TNR'd: 2,051 cats 
Largest colony TNR'd - 68 cats (over six days)
Smallest colony - 1 cat
2nd largest colony TNR'd - 46 cats (over two days)
Furthest distance traveled - 70 miles to Whittman round-trip (32 cats TNR'd and eight kittens to rescue)
Approximate miles traveled for trapping/transporting cats - 17,1248 miles (8.33 miles/cat)
Total cats TNR'd (2008 thru 2014) - 13,938 cats (Average = 1,991 cats/year)

Some history...

I started doing TNR in 2003 with AzCATs. That year, AzCATs fixed 3,430 cats. At the end of 2008, when I left AzCATs and began work with ADLA (thank you ADLA for taking us "orphans" in when we had no home), 13,049 cats were TNR'd in the Phoenix Metro area. Since these TNR programs began in 1999 and the end of 2014, over 130,000 free-roaming cats have been spayed and neutered. And ADLA's Spay Neuter Hotline has fixed over 70,000 of those feral cats since 2009. That is over half of the total cats!

One special trapping comes to mind from 2014. Suzie and I were set to trap for two ladies for Dr. Kit's mobile in December. We were to meet at the first place to trap for an elderly lady with nine cats. I got there early and took the photo below. Suzie arrived 10 minutes later and I already had caught seven cats! I would like to thank Dr. Kit for hosting the free mobile clinics i 2014 for feral cats.

Nine cats on Melvin

The second job was challenging as the caregiver fed the cats on the sidewalk in front of her house. We ended up catching a total of 13 cats over two night but this required a lot of watching and waiting as traps could not be left out unattended. Still, we caught ALL the cats at both places. I did, however, find another colony of cats on the next street behind this place and thee are LOTs of cats there. I have still not had a response to the notes I left at three house on the street.

I would like to share a wonderful story about my dear friend who traps in Pinal County and drives in to Phoenix to take cats to the vet for S/N. Below is a photo of a cat she adopted from one of the colonies she trapped. This cat had been fixed but developed an eye problem later. She went back and drop-trapped her and brought he to the N. Phoenix Animal Clinic to have the eye removed. She recovered at my place and I returned her the next day. Ruth had recently lost two of her older cats and thankfully decided to adopt this beautiful Tortie. Now she is part of their family instead of one one 40+ feral cats in a colony living outside. Despite only having one eye she is doing great and is very lucky to be in a loving home and out of the cold. This girl was truly a Thanksgiving cat!
Thanksgiving Cat!

Below is a photo of a place many a trapper can identify with. Here I sit, waiting for a mother cat and kittens to come out under the fence of a MHP and go under the drop trap. They eat on the concrete in front of the trap. I did manage to get a wandering neighborhood tomcat wandering by but no mom or kittens despite repeated attempts at different times of the day. I often wonder why I do this...sitting is a place like this for hours trying to cat these difficult to catch cats. I think it is the satisfaction of outsmarting them or maybe just the thrill of trapping which is a big part of what motivates me. I still have not caught these illusive cats at this place and mom has had several litters...April will be here soon! The photo is a little difficult to see as it was taken from my phone in the sun.


Now here was a trapping nirvana. Suzie and I worked together and trapped 46 cats, mostly in one night. It took two days to get them fixed because the vet was very busy. The caregiver said there were about 20 until she called me the day before and said she counted 46! Planning is everything in this business. That goodness Dr. Anderson is flexible...We trapped 40 cats in about two hours and six more overnight and the next night. These cats were just waiting to be trapped and cooperated perfectly...(see below)

46 cats waiting to be fixed!

Here is Suzie getting more traps out of her vehicle with a sidewalk full of cats already trapped. We just could not bait fast enough for these cats!what a team.

 40 cats and counting!

And finally the release on the second day of the last cats! Lots of dirty taps and covers to wash...but we competed the colony and none of these cats will be reproducing this Spring.

Release completed!

And finally, I want to thank Suzie and all the volunteers, caregivers, donors and supporters for their help in 2014. Without you none of this important work would be possible. I am especially grateful to those who helped us raise over $4,500 during our annual yard sale. This money is being used to help those needing financial assistance for fixing their colonies. The sale was a great success and many individuals donated items and we had some wonderful volunteers who helped with sorting and the sale. 2014 with a great year and I am looking forward to many more challenges and successes in 2015...the following photo speaks for itself!

2014 yard sale

Finally I would like to than Dr. Anderson and the wonderful staff at the North Phoenix Animal Clinic for fixing all the ferals for us. You guys are the best! I love seeing Dr. A's smiling face when we show up with 46 cats and they get done all in one day! And thank you Erin, my favorite vet tech, for fostering so many kittens for caregivers I assist. You always take the ones needing the most care and attention and all of them have found good homes. You truly care bout cats...

Below is a photo of what the clinic looks like when we bring in 46 cats...

46 cats at the clinic!

...and a first! Someone brought a feral cat to the clinic in a barrel. I can truly say "where there's a will there's a way". Cat had to be netted but it was a tortie and needed fixing.

Cat brought to clinic in a barrel

If live in the Phoenix Metro area and are feeding or know people feeding free-roaming, primarily feral, cats, help is available. Please call the Spay Neuter Hotline @ 602-265-7729 (SPAY). Feel free to also email me @: Thank you for helping the cats!