It’s National Feral Cat Day!

Hissy Fit Jones here. I don’t post much, but today is National Feral Cat Day, a day that’s near and dear to my heart.

former feral, now just looking for a warm spot

I was born to a feral mama. Jen got my mama and then me fixed through a snip and tip program. Then I got sick, and I showed up hoping Jen would help me. And she did. I’ve lived inside with her ever since.

There are many stray and feral cats in the US. How many? It’s estimated there are 50 million of them. Compare that to the 86.4 million cats that are ‘owned.’  That’s alot of homeless cats!

Let’s make more people aware of the problem of feral and stray cats!

There are many differing opinions on how to address the feral cat problem. The most common approach is to do nothing. As you can see, it’s not working.

Some people want to just kill the cats, but the general public tends to cry foul when these measures are taken, and rightly so. Killing the current population may reduce their numbers in the short run, but if you don’t take steps to stop the abandonment of pets and failure to spay/neuter ‘owned’ cats, you’ll eventually be right back where you started from.

There are many trap-neuter-return programs in the US. But this piecemeal approach is also not effective.

I personally like the approach recommended by the Humane Society of the US. To find out where they stand on feral cats, check out this short video.

As the video says, trap-neuter-return can be effective when it’s used as a community-wide approach.  But that costs money- something many communities aren’t willing to spend on cats.

So what to do? I guess until we convince the majority of Americans that it’s worth the effort to do something, we’ll continue to do nothing.

And that makes me feel very sad.

60 thoughts on “It’s National Feral Cat Day!

    1. Yes they are, and I applaud their efforts. But my experience with humans is that they tend to do nothing until a crisis situation forces them into action. And these good folks who try to do something on their own may be delaying that time from coming.

  1. Hi HissyFit Jone’s. We agree with AC. The communities need to get together. The problem will only get worse, if no action is taken 🙂 xx00xx

    1. But how do we convince humans that this problem is worth tackling? That is our true dilemma. they don’t seem to care about much of anything but their own comfort.

    1. You are so right. It would cost MUCH less in the long run to take effective action now. But you know how humans are…. *rolls eyes* If it’s not a crisis, they can’t be bothered to get up off their posteriors.

  2. Hi, Hissy Fit, nice to meet you! I don’t think we’ve met before.
    Let’s hope getting the word out will help more of our feral brothers and sisters. It would be wonderful if all communities could work together to help the feral kitties.
    Love, Sundae

  3. Happy NVCD to everybody! We blogged about this occasion today too – such a HUGE problem and a sad one at that. Education is key……and attacking the problem in a humane manner……let’s hear it for everyone involved in this massive effort…..YAY!……..and those of us who were formerly feral thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

    Love the new blog format!! Kitty Hugs, Sam (and his Mom)

    1. We’re experimenting… trying to find something that shows up the type and still allows for a photo in the back…. working on getting a better photo.

      1. To be honest, I don’t like if text is moving in front of static images, that makes me a bit vertiginous. But many people seem to like a design like that, so I guess it’s just me.

      2. that can be changed with the click of one button on my end. I’ll work on that later. Thanks!

  4. i’m taking my little slinky cat in to the vet today,i hope the doctor is ready for a very nervous mommy(me!) i’m scared slinky will have a chip and be a longtime runaway 😦 i have feed him outside for 5 months,until last week when i brought him in. i wish i could bring them all in or afford to ‘fix’ them. i’m happy that there are 4 other ladies in my neighborhood that feed them to. by the way nice new look,and dear rumpy…you always take a great pic. but o do know what it’s like to work around a background and the blogs text color to.

    1. If kitty does have a chip, please consider the family that may be grieving for their lost kitty. You could bring them much joy. And trust me when I say that there will NEVER be a shortage of kitties needing your help.

      1. check this out….he does not have a chip,but he was already fixed! i’ve said all along that i think he’s a savannha that the coat didn’t come out to the breeds standards. the vet was reluctant to name his breed UNTIL after he was sedated/examined and ready to leave. he was sedated so the doc could get in his mouth. his eating problems are from stomitis(sp?) a very severe case.he brought me back to him while he was still under to give me the possible bad news other than that…he needed to do blood work because he said if he has feline blood cancer the steroids for the stomitis will kill him. so i was crying like a baby! my poor little cat! thankfully he doesn’t have it or the fiv?/flv? i got him the vaccinations/steroid shot/an inline flea killer. he goes back in about 3 weeks for the boosters.he said if the infection doesn’t start getting better in a week to call him. the only course of treatment is to get more shots of steroids from time to time or get his teeth pulled. so i will get his teeth pulled if it doesn’t get better.when he found out the cat was already fixed and was able to really get a good look at him under sedation,plus me telling him how he does indoors(very used to a house AND a cat carrier/car. so long story short slinky is okay, all mine and def.a savannah. i will do a post with pics. on him later 🙂 right now i’m so excited that he has no chip or cancer!! 🙂

      2. i tried to reply from my notifications but it said i didn’t have accs. to private messages?… so we are back he does not have any chip,(he was homeless for 5 months that I KNOW OF)he does have severe stomitits. they had to do a blood test to see if he has feline lukemia or the fiv/flv?. because if he did the steroid shot for the infection would kill him.i got to go back while he was sedated and the doc showed me his little mouth. his tongue tip was eroded,a large blister in the center of his tongue and the gums were blood red. his back throat/jaws area was just horrid. it reminded me of the tumor that abcessed through my breast when i had cancer still. so i just broke down crying cause it seemed the doc was pretty sure he had cancer. thankfully the blood work came back good. he’s anemic though.i have always thought he was a whole dif sort of cat and after i got him in here i started looking up his body style . he’s very slim and tall in the rear and shorter in front. he has black rimmed eyes to. he does not meow at all, just a wierd sound he will hiss just like a snake though! freaked me out the first time he did that. so at first the vet was like well unless we can see papers from a breeder we just refer to short hairs as ‘domestic short hairs’ but after talking to me and being able to fully examine him he said he feels that he is def a savannah cat. see what i think rumpy is that his coat didn’t come out like the breeds standards so they let him go. now i think the same but that the breeder had him fixed so that no one else could profit from cats that may come from him looking full blooded savannah. well i’m just glad he is okay and he doesn’t have cancer. i got him hid vaccinations/ frontline flea implant,the steroid shot. it should start to work in a weeks time, or less and if his mouth hasn’t improved i have to bring him back for more steroids. the other treatment is to have all his teeth pulled. which i will do if it seems like he will be in and out of pain from the stomitis. i’m going to do a post on him with pics. in the next day or two. 🙂 my little guy is sleeping right now in next to me 🙂

      3. Wow, ya mean he’s already neutered? Ya know Malachi was neutered when we found him. It does happen. I’m glad you chose to care for this kitty. You are a super hero!

  5. In this area of France we got a problem with abandoned and feral cats near the cities. They often suffer from Feline infectious peritonitis and spread the disease. On the countryside there are no feral cats. I bet the hunters shoot them. That doesn’t make me like the hunters, I bet they shoot ANY cat they see.

    1. There may also be other predators that compete for food. And just because you don’t see them doesn’t mean they’re not there.

      1. Yes, there are other predators, mainly foxes and badgers. But I see foxes and badgers, so I guess I would see cats too. Plus it’s very difficult to hide on the vast fields.

    1. I have an idea about that too Jimmie. I just need some time to think about how to make it happen. More on that later.

  6. Hi Hissy Fit Jones! mom has almost the similar problem here as recently two feral kitties were dumped in our neighborhood….mom’s looked after them and when they become enough month, she will take them to vet, but the problem is that some our neighbors don’t like cats but also dogs……some say sarcastic things to mom….
    I agree with Jimmie Chew’s idea, we should educate scool kids about animals and natures!

    1. Kevin, Jen LOVES cats, and she can find them annoying. The neighbors’ cat is an unaltered male. He sleeps on Jen’s car at night and she fears he may climb inside when it gets colder. He sprays in our yard and has even sprayed the front door *holds nose*. AND he poops in our yard. And since I like to eat poop, Jen is concerned he may make me sick or I could make our kitties sick if I walk through the poop and track it inside. And all that is from a cat that has a home!

  7. A lot of the cats in this area of Spain are partly feral. We have had a few requests to ‘borrow’ one of our male cats because they look big and healthy and people would like their kittens. They are usually shocked when told that our cats cannot oblige – spaying and neutering seem to be unheard of around here.

  8. It seem as many of us have the same idea. We need to start young and educate our children about good pet stewardship. We also need to educate people about spaying and neutering. So many people think it will somehow change or hurt their animal. Now I realize that I hold a pretty harsh view on breeding, (I think it should be halted) but while cats and dogs of all breeds are dying in kill shelters and living lonely lives in non-kill shelter, we need to focus on them and stop bring new kittens in to the world. Educating men on the fixing of male pets is something I’d like to see untakem in magazines men tend to read. We need to explain that neutering doesn’t reflect on the maleness of their pet. How would we go about getting someone like Sports Illistrated to do an article? Maybe a magazine about hunting? Are hunting dogs fixed? Maybe that would be a place to start. Now I just I’ll stop before I write the article. Thanks Rumpy and Hissy Fit for bring attention to national feral cat day.

  9. The only way the problem can be tackled is if every single human takes personal responsibility for the stray and feral cats on their property. I came from a group of 23 strays/ferals. The Guardians of Otis worked tirelessly for 4 years taming cats that could be tamed and finding them homes, trapping ferals that could be trapped and taking them to a shelter, and burying cats that were killed by cars, disease and each other. At the end of the 4 year period they no longer saw any strays or ferals on the property. If you see a cat that needs help, help it. Don’t wait for someone else to care. Be the change you want to see in the world.

  10. Out of control cat population…oops…bound to spell trouble when no one has the sense to neuter but as you have shown here, it’s a complex problem with no easy answers. I would say though, that my little feline friend recently spayed after much persuasion, is doing great and has a new lease of life now the hormones aren’t running her into the ground all the time. She has re-directed that energy into hunting and had jsut begun proudly carrying dead mice she has caught back to the house to play with in the kitchen!!! I hope the feral cat issue can be resolved as kindly and fairly as possible for them 🙂

  11. as always, Hissy Fit J and Rumpy bring a great topic and encourage great ideas. I think sometimes I mix up feral versus stray cats. And there is a difference. The ‘strays’ may sometimes be easier to bring in, socialize and find a home. Ferals are more challenging, yet they can be caught, and I support SNR as a way to control populations of feral cats. BUT, I hate leaving cats outside period, there are too many dangers and their deaths will mostly be horrible and painful. sigh

  12. Hi there Hissy fit Jones, I thought I just tell you that my sister who has a house in Spain and has been there for several months, has just adopted two feral kittens. Their Mum had them on my sister’s patio, there were four of them to start with. Sadly two of their brothers got run over , not long after their mum got ill and died. So my sister against all advise took the two babies in , she had them snipped chipped de-flea’d de-wormed and got them both passports! The babies are now on their way over land to be reunited with their new Mum and Dad ( sister and her husband) this Thursday. Well I am looking forward to seeing my sister as she has been away since May and I am very excited and looking forward to meeting the babies! OH! their names are Infanta and Salvador!! I think their names are bigger than they are!! Keep well Hissy ( can I call you that for short) and keep stum about you know who’s big day!! xxxxx

  13. Nice to hear from you Hissy Fit Jones. Every day should be Feral Cat Day… they didn’t get that way on their own. We do what we can but in isolation it just isn’t enough… you are so right to support this campaign and awareness 🙂

  14. We horse lovers are faced with the same thing…and I am a kitty lover 1000% and also dog lover 1000%…these animals deserve to live….they did not “FORCE US” to breed them and then have them…and then abandon them….but they were born because of some dumb breeder who could not keep them.

    I hate those people that either bought animals they could not afford or whatever…animals depend on US for their lives and their support…as we expect everyday to wake up and get a coffee cup full of coffee and breakfast….we humans expect it to live as we have a will to live…so why would our animals not want to live…wake up people and do something…our animals are suffering and it is because of us…do something…adopt…give…and rescue like we did…just do it and do it some more:)

  15. We gave a tiny feral kitty a home a few months ago. I had no idea she had a day!!! I’m going to tell her. She’ll be thrilled. Norma Jean was about starved to death when we found her. She is fat and sassy and loves us now, but she is still a tiny bit wild and crazy.
    I wanted to let you know that I’ve moved the hosting for Sugar Dish Me, so it will no longer appear in your reader. The address is still the same, so if you’d like to re-subscribe via email or rss feed that would be great!
    I love what you do here- raising awareness and giving a voice to all the animals that don’t have one.

    1. Norma Jean – what a great name for your cat!

      Still a tiny bit wild & crazy – that’s just the way I like my cats! 🙂

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