We have been terribly short-handed of volunteers for a wide variety of reasons. Some have gotten jobs, some have changed vehicles, some have given up TNR completely for health reasons, some have injuries that prevent them from transporting, We have way too many friendlies on our hands that suck up immense amounts of time with daily care, trying to find fosters, get the cats to and from fosters, checking shelters to see if any can go for adoption thru them, going to the vet. Every new call for help has even more kittens.
We had hoped to send 40 cats into PAWS on Thursday but there just was no time to schedule and arrange trapping, so our vehicle left with 18 cats this morning, 3 ferals and 15 friendlies. Before Charli had even left PAWS to return, the vet had discovered three with possible ringworm - surgery further lowers their immune system and the spores can actually end up inside and then its an absolutely horrible condition and a fourth kitten had upper respiratory symptoms. They can leave for PAWS with no symptoms and by the time they get to PAWS, the stress can have their nose running, their eyes goopy and its better to err on the safe side. So Charli dropped all four back off at Tammy's when she returned.
That left 14 for Rita and Judy J. to pick up. Of those, one had a hernia which was repaired and there were two kittens with heart murmurs that we authorized to have surgery. In the mix were 6 females and 8 males. This brings us to 832 cats for the year and 6,808 overall.
We rely heavily on our volunteers in order to keep up our numbers that we send in to PAWS and PAWS relies heavily on Feral Fixers to meet our projected numbers - they receive grants and donations that often are dependent on the number of animals that they neuter in a year and all of the groups that use PAWS need to help them meet their goals so that they can continue to support us.
If you haven't figured it out yet, this is yet another plea for volunteers for transport and foster and relocation. We are not a brick and mortar where you can show up on a Tuesday for two hours and feed, scoop and pet cats and that's it. We are entirely different, more nuts and bolts - our volunteers do the tasks that many shelters are able to pay people to do - we do not have that luxury.
We tried to take time off from trapping in August but still all we did was get caught up on a few things - we just allocated our time differently for a short period.
We cannot continue to work at this pace without additional volunteers who are as dedicated as we are and really want to see an end to cat overpopulation and euthanasia in DuPage County. An end to the 4 newborn kittens found several times a year from the same mom cat. A time where every cat is in a home if they want to be.