One Man, One Hundred Cats
Back in March, 2011, Doug Christensen filled out an application for help for the Los Alamitos “racetrack kitties.” Doug was trying to get some help for the cats and kittens at the racetrack. He estimated there might be as many as 100 cats on site.
Doug had done his research and found FixNation, where he learned about our life-based program for stray and homeless cats, which provides free spay/neuter, vaccinations, flea treatment, and eartipping. Doug attended one of FixNation’s free Humane Trap Training Sessions in April 2011, where he received all the tricks of the trade for humanely and safely trapping the cats. Once properly trained, Doug was supplied with 10 humane cat traps as part of FixNation’s Free Trap Loan Program. Working with FixNation gave him everything he needed to start the process of systematically trapping the cats at each colony location at the racetrack.
Doug knew where the main colonies of cats were, just by being at the racetrack and observing the cats. But as he started his TNR mission, he started being contacted by other concerned racetrack employees, asking if he could also help them with the cats they were seeing at their particular areas. Doug wasn’t the only person who had noticed the cats.
Jockey Eswan Flores came to know the racetrack cats while riding quarter horses at the Los Alamitos Race Course. “My friends began to notice a lot of kittens in the stables,” Eswan stated. “And the more we looked, the more cat families we discovered.”
Although it seemed a daunting task at first, Doug trapped 32 feral cats from the racetrack himself — and many more were brought to FixNation by Deborah Trout, and others who stepped in to help Doug trap and transport the cats to FixNation.
Doug is simply a motivated gentleman who not only identified the feral overpopulation challenge at the racetrack, but choose to find a humane solution, a life-based solution, rather than the only other alternative, which is trap and kill.
Doug’s compassion for the cats of Los Alamitos was embraced by the other racetrack employees, who also care for the cats. Doug’s efforts have made it possible for the cats to continue to coexist with the racetrack horses, companions in the stables to their larger sized friends.