If rounding up and killing all the community (stray and outdoor) cats in a community worked, it wouldn’t be a persistent problem requiring a solution. We must acknowledge that the traditional way of addressing issues with community cats hasn’t worked. It’s time to implement programs that produce real outcomes and save lives.
Brownsville Animal Regulation Care Center endorses lifesaving community cat programs that use trap-neuter-vaccinate-return (TNVR).
TRAP: Humanely trap outdoor cats who have no indication of ownership and bring them to a veterinary care facility.
NEUTER: Sterilize the cat to prevent breeding and, while the cat is under anesthesia, surgically remove the tip of one ear to signify that the cat has been through the TNVR program.
VACCINATE: Administer vaccination to protect other cats and the human population from communicable disease.
RETURN: After the cats have recovered from surgery (typically one day), return the cats to the location they were trapped.
An ear tip allows the public to know immediately if an outdoor cat has been through TNVR.
PROBLEMS WITH THE TRADITIONAL METHOD
The community cat population does not decrease.
It does nothing to address aggression or nuisance behaviors such as yowling and spraying.
The surviving community cats are still susceptible to contracting and spreading communicable diseases.
BENEFITS OF TNVR
Reduction in the community cat population over time by providing stability to the cat colony
Decrease in aggression toward other animals
Reduction in nuisance behaviors such as yowling and spraying
Vaccination prevents the spread of disease among cats and humans.
TNVR is the most effective and humane way to save the lives of community cats while reducing their numbers.