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Do you have stray or feral cats in your neighborhood? KHS can help!
Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) Program For Community Cats
How We Can Help
In an effort to humanely stabilize and gradually reduce Kitsap County’s free-roaming and feral cat population, Kitsap Humane Society works with volunteers, local spay/neuter groups and community cat caretakers to implement a comprehensive Trap / Neuter / Return program. Spayed and neutered cats make better neighbors and will help reduce the free-roaming cat overpopulation problem.
Benefits of the Community Cats TNR program include:
- Fewer unwanted litters
- Reduction of nuisance complaints by residents
- Alleviation of public health concerns
- Lower animal control costs
Why Trap / Neuter / Return?
Scientific studies show that TNR is the only humane and effective solution for managing feral cat populations. Attempts to permanently remove cats from an area are ineffective due to a phenomenon known as the “vacuum effect”: Whenever resident cats are permanently removed from an established habitat, new cats move in, or surviving cats left behind will breed to capacity. As a result of this vacuum effect, the “trap and kill” approach to feral cats is not only cruel and pointless, but also completely ineffective at stabilizing the cat population.
How Does the Trap / Neuter / Return Program Work?
- KHS volunteers assist with canvassing the neighborhood (to inform about the upcoming trapping).
- Volunteers assist with humanely trapping and transporting un-owned cats, which will be returned 24 hours after surgery.
- KHS Veterinary Services provides FREE spay / neuter surgeries for free-roaming cats ($10 for owned outdoor cats) in Port Orchard’s 98366 Zip Code area.
- We also provide low cost ($25) spay / neuter surgeries for un-owned free-roaming cats in all other areas of Kitsap County.
- All altered cats are vaccinated against rabies.
- Once trapped, sterilized and vaccinated, un-owned cats are ear-tipped for identification purposes. Ear tipping easily identifies a cat as already sterilized and reduces stressful handling.
- We determine the disposition of all cats and kittens trapped during the TNR process (to determine if potentially adoptable) and encourage adoptive placement for friendly cats and kittens. Kittens are fostered and socialized to prepare them for adoption.
- After cats are returned to their original habitat, KHS provides support for colony caretakers, and volunteers help to educate neighbors in the area about free roaming cats and their care.
For information on volunteering for our TNR program, or if you know of a colony that needs spay/neuter services, please contact Kitsap Humane Society at email@example.com, or call (360) 692-6977.
Steps to Prepare for TNR of Stray Cats in Your Area:
- Step 1: Feed – To get the cats used to coming out and eating while you are there (and help with your assessment process), establish a set time and place to feed the cats every day in an area that is safe and dry. Feed the cats as much as they can eat in a 30-minute period, and pick up the food after that period. If you have a feeding station, make sure it is positioned in an area that is free of human traffic and inconspicuous.
- Step 2: Assess – Use a tracking sheet to document general descriptions of the cats and how many you are seeing. This is useful when trapping, to know which cats have been trapped and how many remain. Often there are unseen ferals in a colony, so plan for 1-3 extra cat surgeries. Track pregnancies and nursing mothers closely, as this may change a trapping plan. As soon as you see kittens, they should be trapped and brought in to KHS for socializing and re-homing. Generally, any healthy feral kittens under 10 weeks of age have a high chance of becoming socialized and being adopted out to loving, indoor homes.
- Step 3: Plan your Trap-Neuter-Return – Contact KHS at (360) 692-6977 for trapping instructions, assistance, and humane live traps that can be checked out with a deposit, and to make surgery reservations. If you see more than 2 cats, it is best to call KHS to coordinate a mass trapping, to get all of the cats trapped at once. We can assist in canvassing the neighborhood before the trapping event, to prevent pet cats from being trapped and to gain community cooperation in withholding food the day before trapping. The cost of each cat's surgery is $25 (includes spay / neuter, a rabies vaccine and an ear-tip). PLEASE NOTE: If you live within the Port Orchard 98366 Zip Code, please make this clear to KHS staff, as we are able to provide FREE TNR assistance and surgeries within this area.
*Note - If you are unable to perform the trapping, follow steps 1 & 2 and call us. You can also e-mail for assistance or referrals, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Helpful links on community cat care:
• www.meetup.com/KitsapFerals/ (Kitsap County, Washington)
• www.Feralcatproject.org (Washington)
• www.communitykitties.com (Washington)