No Cats June 11th
No cats will be transported to PAWS on June 11th. Taking a much needed break. Actually need more than one week, but it will have to do. Tell everyone you know, forward the information, cat gets into a trap we will give you the directions to go to PAWS yourself, have a good trip. We will be back at it on the 18th. See you then.
Indoor & Outdoor Cats Are Our Canaries In A Mineshaft
Back in the days when coal miners worked far beneath the earth in tiny shafts, bad air would build up – natural gas & methane & more. An early warning system they utilized (before mechanical air systems) was to bring a cage with a bird in it down into the shaft with them. When it fell over, it was time to exit the shaft – fast. Canaries are no longer used in this fashion, but the phrase “canaries in a mineshaft” sticks with us as a measurement of hazards we encounter. Feral cats and cats in general seem to be our environmental (both in-home and outdoors) alarms of hazards we are willingly tolerating for ourselves with a long-term negative outcome for the cats. It's not an immediate response but should be taken seriously.
Recently I was asked my opinion on why cats seem to all get sick with the same ailments, kidney, thyroid and cancer. So when this article popped up, I decided to share it with you (the original report is here).
And, while talking about dangers in the home, second hand smoke is a very real threat; see here and here (also on our facebook).
Being a “cat resource” we often get calls about the symptoms that cats are exhibiting and the pet parents are frustrated because they can’t find a reason for the eye and nose drainage, the sores that are developing on the cats’ bodies, etc. I’ve taken to asking whether the pet parent smokes, following up with asking how many scented products they use in their home. Even if you smoke out on the patio, the smoke blows in and is on your clothing. Even tho the scented fabric softener vents to the outside, the carpet deodorizer gets vacuumed up, the automatic air freshener only goes off once an hour, the cats are in your home 24/7 and the toxicity builds in their system of all the chemicals in the cigarettes, cleansers and fresheners. Several people have quit smoking and removed chemicals in their homes to find that their cats resolve all the symptoms that were so mystifying.
While research has not been done on cats in regards to the environmental effects of pesticides and herbicides, it is having an impact on children who play on treated soccer fields – it is sure to have similar impact on smaller creatures who spend their lives on our lawns.
Since we’ve been doing this for more than seven years, we’ve seen how the environment the cats are living in can impact successive generations. We’ve seen how three different cats from a neighborhood all come down with cancer by the time they are five. Seen where cats living in an industrial area all have food allergies and chronic health conditions. We don’t have the time or finances to do a complete study, it’s all anecdotal, but should not be disregarded.
Cats start out at just a few ounces and average 10 to 20 pounds upon adulthood. Ingesting chemicals their whole lives can have extreme ramifications. These are chemicals that have been tested on a very limited basis on the theory that only 100+ lb humans would encounter them intermittently – and still they have nasty side effects! Cats are our canaries in the mine shaft, please consider them when making purchases and decisions that can affect not only your pets but feral cats that roam our lawns!
Our Numbers Are Lower This Year
While we are only down 61 cats from last year at this time, it comes after 7 years of steady growth numbers. Hopefully one of the reasons our numbers are lower than last years’ so far is that there are, in fact, fewer cats remaining to be neutered. But also it is because we just don’t have a sufficient number of volunteers to do many of the numerous tasks that need doing.
• All of our weekly transporters have developed health issues that are resulting in their taking several months off from transport – which reduces the numbers we are able to take in to the clinic.
• Many of the people who helped by coordinating caretakers and trapping around where they live or work are no longer able to do so = we just can’t get to the cats in a timely manner, or are using lots of gas and time to do so.
• Many of our fosters have had life changes and are no longer able to foster our friendly adults or kittens = volunteers who did trapping are now fostering.
And the list goes on.
Everyone has lives of their own. We understand that. We are really tired tho.
There are still cats to be done. Please contact us to volunteer!
Kittens, Kittens, Kittens
Not all of our shelter partners have been able to take kittens, but West Suburban Humane Society and ADOPT of Naperville have been going neck and neck in accepting litters of kittens and adults from us. Every week we are on the phone to see what they can absorb from us – which means that their fosters are doing a great job, too!
We’re being very careful to get the kittens from each location this year, even more than ever before. We do not want even one to stay, remain unneutered and make more for the following year, or even yet THIS year. Everyone we talk to has seen a reduction in the numbers of kittens they are receiving, which is absolutely music to our ears. And we are having even greater success in trapping the moms at the same time so that they cannot go on to make more.
When you hear something over and over, it tends to lose its impact, yet we must announce again:
WE NEED FOSTERS!
It can’t be emphasized enough! We have said before that it is not an easy job, but it is very rewarding and so necessary. Until we “fill up” our shelter partners, the kittens go to them as soon as they are eating on their own and healthy. After the shelter fosters are full, we hold onto the kittens until they are of age to be neutered and socialized enough to go out on the adoption floor. Once we fill up that space, our fosters hold onto the kittens until they are adopted. We promote the cats those shelters have taken because every adoption creates more room for cats to come in. We try to keep the flow going all summer long as best we can, we absolutely would prefer to adopt out cats than hold onto them. The commitment therefore could be just a week or two, a month or several months, depending on the “market” flow. Some kittens may be moved between several fosters before they find their furrever home – which can result in a very well-rounded cat! Takes a village is absolutely true.
Fundraisers & Events
We love it when a merchant wants to help us help the cats! We have a Jamberry Nails fundraiser starting June 1st and check out our Flower Power fundraiser – shop for Feral Fixers from the comfort of your online “home”! Citadel Information Management is doing their part to protect your identity by hosting Shred4Rescues on June 20th, Feral Fixers will be there – please stop by and say hello! We are always interested in offering events and merchandise where our donors can get/do what they want/need and benefit Feral Fixers as well. Please keep us in mind!