What is TNR?
Trap-Neuter-Return, or “TNR” for short, is the humane approach to controlling feral cat overpopulation. It’s a community-based program that involves concerned citizens like you trapping free-roaming cats in your neighborhood, bringing them to a clinic like FixNation to get them spayed or neutered, and then returning the cats to the exact location where you trapped them so they can live out the rest of their natural lives, ideally with a caregiver also providing food, water and shelter for them.
There exists in the Los Angeles area a very large population of homeless stray and feral cats. Given their strong survival capabilities and prolific breeding, if nothing is done, this population will simply continue to grow. If the population is left unchecked, it will only lead to more and more cats living in unmanaged colonies, a decrease in public tolerance of homeless cats, and increased pressure on the environment, animal control agencies and our society as a whole.
Trap and remove doesn’t work.
The old approach to controlling free-roaming cats was repeated extermination attempts. Capturing feral cats and turning them in to animal shelters, where they will be killed, may temporarily reduce their numbers, but this doesn’t solve the problem for long. Cats are living there in the environment because of two main reasons: 1) there is a food source (intended or not) and 2) there is some sort of shelter. When cats are removed from a location, it creates a “vacuum” effect — meaning the surrounding cats can sense it and they breed rapidly to fill in the gap, plus new cats move in to take advantage of the natural food and shelter sources. This vacuum effect is well documented. Trapping and removing cats often results in having even more unsterilized cats in the location than when you started. Catch and kill is very costly, doesn’t work, and ultimately it’s inhumane.
Trap-Neuter-Return is a proven and humane solution.
On the other hand, Trap-Neuter-Return programs are a very successful method of decreasing feral cat populations. TNR programs succeed at the least cost to the public and provide the best possible life for the cats themselves. Therefore, FixNation devotes most of its resources – financial, personnel and material – toward decreasing the number of homeless cats in our community by offering free sterilization services for homeless stray and feral cats at our clinic.
Are you feeding outdoor cats? You’ve also got to fix them.
Providing food, water and shelter for outdoor cats is important, but it’s also equally important to make sure all of the cats in the group or colony are spayed and neutered. If not, your small colony of today will soon be a very large colony tomorrow! Cat colonies can quickly quadruple in size in a very short period of time, as cats can have two to three litters per year of five to six kittens each. And then those kittens can become pregnant at about six months of age…and so the cycle continues. Spaying and neutering the cats will not only stop the breeding cycle, but it will also eliminate problematic behaviors such as howling, fighting and spraying.
So what are you waiting for? It’s time to TNR!