Last Updated on: October 16, 2016 by Ingrid King
Today is National Feral Cat Day. This day was launched by Alley Cat Allies in 2001 to raise awareness about feral cats, promote Trap-Neuter-Return, and recognize the millions of compassionate Americans who care for them. The theme for this year’s National Feral Cat Day is “All Cats All Communities.” Supporters from around the world are advocating for the lives of cats and educating their communities about humane policies, like Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), that help save cats’ lives and protect all cats in all communities.
Since 2011, more than 2,773 National Feral Cat Day events and activities have taken place—spreading the word and helping cats all over the country and the world. Alley Cat Allies hopes that this year’s activities will reach even more people.
How you can help community cats
- Educate yourself about the plight of community cats. Vox Felina, a website dedicated to providing critical analysis of claims made in the name of science by those opposed to feral/free-roaming cats and trap-neuter-return (TNR), is an excellent resource for learning more about the feral cat problem. Alley Cat Allie’s website provides a wealth of information on all aspects of helping feral cats.
- Share your support for community cats by posting about National Feral Cat Day on social media
- Make a donation to a group that advocates for community cats.
Feral Cat Facts
- Cats have lived alongside humans for more than 10,000 years. They are part of the natural landscape. Feral cats, also called communitycats, are the same species as pet cats, live in groups called colonies, and can thrive in every landscape. They are just as healthy as pet cats, but they are not socialized to humans and are therefore generally considered unadoptable, although it can be possible, with a lot of patience, to domesticate a feral cat.
- Trap-Neuter-Return is a humane and effective approach to caring for community cats and stabilizing the cat population. From 2003 to 2013 the number of local governments with official policies endorsing TNR increased tenfold, with hundreds of cities and towns successfully carrying out TNR programs. That number continues to grow every year.
- More than 70% of all cats who enter shelters are killed there, including virtually 100% of feral cats.
- Feral cats can have the same lifespan as pet cats.
- More than 80% of Americans think it’s more humane to leave a stray cat where he is to live out his life than to have him caught and killed.
For more information about National Feral Cat Day 2016, please visit Alley Cat Allies.
Sunday Purrs of Wisdom will return next week.
Ingrid King is an award-winning author, former veterinary hospital manager, and veterinary journalist who is passionate about cats.