Feral Fixers Logo
Practicing and promoting Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) in DuPage County, Illinois

We're a 501c3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting and practicing Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) in DuPage County, Illinois. We believe that TNR is the only effective, humane and long-term solution to the problem of cat overpopulation.
The Feral Fixers e-Newsletter - Issue #35 - November 2011
In This Issue
Letter from the President
Want to Help?
Don't forget to follow us on Facebook!
Microchips are Forever!
Every Rescue & Shelter Needs Fosters NOW!
How many cats? 3,352 !!
Donate to Feral Fixers
Calendar of Upcoming Events
Shop for Feral Fixers
Learning more about FIP
Visit us on the Web
What is Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR)?
About us
Dear Friend,

Feral Fixers is embarked on a year-end push to once-again exceed the "1,000 cats in one year" mark.  We did this for the first time last year and it would be very cool if we can do it again this year.

In her Letter from The President, Tammy talks about this, the fact that there is still no shortage of cats, a new, one-day record for bringing cats to PAWS, upcoming Feral Fixers events (including our first-ever Oberweis Fundraiser) and, among other topics, how we're planning on taking a winter hiatus.

In this eNewsletter you can also read about Willow the cat and her good fortune that Microchips are truly forever, learn more about FIP and the ongoing need for Fosters.

As the holiday season approaches, we once again want to thank our volunteers and supporters and say again that WE COULDN'T DO WHAT WE DO WITHOUT YOU!


Feral Fixers
Feral Fixers LogoLetter from the President

Taking a Break

After December 15th, we will be on hiatus until about February 15th.  Too cold for the females after surgery and boy do we need a break!

New One Day Record!

I would never have imagined bringing in 63 cats in one day to PAWS.  Back when Chicagoland Stray Cat Coalition first started (about 9 years ago), having over 40 cats in one day at a Spay Day at PAWS from multiple groups was a reasonable day.  Since then those individual groups are bringing cats in independently on multiple dates in a month, instead of one or two days of combined effort.  How far we all have come!  Since more people know about TNR as an accepted practice, since PAWS has increased their ability to do an even higher volume of cats and we have such great volunteers to transport and recover the cats, so many more neuters are possible!

Can We Do It Again?

As I write this, we are 122 cats away from 1,000 for the year.  And, as I write this, we have 16 cats ready for a trip to PAWS tomorrow.  Think we can manage 106 more cats before the end of the year?  That would be two years in a row, what a great accomplishment!

Many Thanks!

Thank you to everyone who came to our Celebrate 3000! Breakfast and to our Shop4Strays Bazaar!  It was wonderful seeing everyone and you all have such nice things to say!

Thank you to everyone who has donated in response to my plea last month.  We have a little breathing room once again, thank you all so much!

Upcoming Events

On November 20th, we will have our first Oberweis fundraiser.  We picked Elmhurst as the first location to try this event out in.  Every store coordinates their own fundraisers, it would have been cool to have a fundraiser at every Oberweis in the area at the same time, but the logistics to do so were intimidating - there are a lot of Oberweis stores!  The way it works is that you bring the flyer to the store and we get a percentage of what you spend on that day.  The more people who shop, the more we get, all the way up to 30%!  That is a good fundraiser!  Oberweis has more than milk, more than ice cream, take a look at their pies and take it easy for Thanksgiving and let someone else make desert!

And on November 29th, when you might still be feeling a little overstuffed, come to Sweet Tomatoes and dive into some veggies to balance it all out!

Then on January 15th is our big event, Frosty Claws.  We are already planning to have a lot of fun, come join us and share a good time with other cat-lovin' folk!  The silent auction items are already coming in, we have promise of two feral cat shelters, a quilt, who knows what else we will have on hand!  Recycled2New will be there with new products and ideas.  Stay tuned for further developments!

We're Not Running Out Of Cats

One would think with almost 3,400 cats neutered, we would be running out of cats to TNR.  We are still encountering colonies of 20 here and there and of course, the people who think they only have two cats and are still trapping 10 cats later!

We can't wait to see what the numbers are for 2011 at DuPage County.  We hope they will be much lower, how much will the numbers be impacted by the economy - people abandoning cats that then do not act friendly when they get to Animal Control and therefore are entered as feral, we don't know.

Its hard to measure on a spreadsheet, but we know for sure that we are impacting the lives of humans and cats alike by all of the positive response we get every time we hear from you, our wonderful supporters!

We couldn't do it without you!
Woman with ResumeWant to help?

Interested in helping Feral Fixers? We are looking for a 'few good volunteers'! Specifically, we're looking for someone to help us transport cats to and from PAWS (the Spay/Neuter clinic we use) in Chicago.

We need transport both in the morning and the afternoon. If you're interested in helping, call us at (630) 881-FXRS (3977) or email us at info@feralfixers.org.
Feral Fixers Logo Don't forget to follow us on Facebook!

Feral Fixers has a very active Facebook page.  You can go there and get the very latest information about what we are doing - sometimes even before it shows up on the blog!

Don't forget to "Like" us and the good karma will surely flow your way...

To find our Facebook page, click on the facebook logo.

Thank you!
Microchips are Forever! 

A Colorado housecat, missing for 5 years, was found on the streets of New York City!

From the article: "How she got to New York, nearly 1,800 miles away, and the kind of life she lived in the city are mysteries.

But thanks to a microchip implanted when she was a kitten, Willow will be reunited in Colorado with her owners, who had long ago given up hope."

Feral Fixers microchips all cats that we have fixed and this has paid off many times - we have had cats returned to their owners and feral cats returned to their colonies.

Read the entire article here.

(Picture thumbnail is of Willow.  Click on it for a larger version.  More pictures of Willow are contained in the article about her.)
Feral Fixers LogoEvery Rescue & Shelter Needs Fosters NOW! 

We are in touch with almost all of the shelters in the DuPage area in one way or another.  Fostering is down, not as many people are doing it this year.  Most shelters are closing their doors to intake as they cannot support the animals they currently have.  For shelters that do store front adoptions, without a brick and mortar shelter, they need to have at least as many fosters as they have animals in those cages in case they get sick or need a break from being too long at the stores.  Brick and mortar shelters are limited because most animals need to go into foster and be "tested" in a home situation.  They need to know how a cat is going to behave in a home so that when they adopt it out, they can be reasonably certain that the cat will use the litter box, not attack other animals or children or climb the drapes.  Fostering is the proving ground prior to adoption.
What the lack of fosters means to us is that we CANNOT take in fully adoptable animals from the outside.  Every time we place kittens with a shelter, the same number show up, fresh from the outside.  There are long lines waiting to get in.
Adoptions are down.  The economy sucks.
If you have the ability, the room, the talent, please offer to foster.  If not for us, for any shelter close to your home.
We've asked for fosters before and ended up softening the wording, trying to be more positive, but it has not worked.  Every day, we have to make hard choices about who can have a home because we have nowhere to put these cats and kittens.
There are fewer cats than there would be if we had not begun almost four years ago.  Things are going to get harder before they get better.  And if you can play a part in things getting better, you will have our unlimited gratitude and the satisfaction of playing a part in making things better for cats all over DuPage.  It may just be one cat, one litter of kittens that you see in front of you, but look behind them at all the others that they symbolize.
Thank you so much, if you are reading this, you care.  Please pass on information about this enormous need to anyone you think can help.
Thank you.
How many cats? - 3,352 !!Statistics graphic

Feral Fixers was founded in September of 2007. In that abbreviated first year, Feral Fixers had 86 cats spayed / neutered. In 2008, Feral Fixers had 525 cats spayed / neutered and in 2009, Feral Fixers had 868 cats spayed / neutered. In 2010, Feral Fixers had 1,002 cats spayed / neutered!  This year, Feral Fixers has had 871 cats spayed/neutered so far.

This brings us to a total of 3,352 cats. Clicking on the adding machine will send you to the Feral Fixers 'Statistics' page where you can see our progress, month-by-month, since we've started work.
PayPal DonationDonate to Feral Fixers

Feral Fixers offers its TNR services to all colony caretakers, without charge.  While we ask for donations from colony caretakers, we recognize that for some of them, any additional cost is just too much.  Therefore we rely on donations from other individuals to make up the difference and allow us to continue our work.  These donations allow us to spay/neuter additional cats, keep a 'bank' of traps and trap dividers we loan out for free, hold workshops and provide other educational benefits.

You can help us continue our work by clicking on the Donate button, above.  This will take you to the PayPal website where you can donate to Feral Fixers via PayPal or credit card.  Feral Fixers is a registered 501c3 charitable organization and all donations are deductible to the fullest amount allowed by law.

We greatly appreciate any amount you can afford to give - Thank You!
Clock graphicCalendar of Upcoming Events
November 20th, 2011 - Oberweis FundRaiser! All purchases at the Oberweis store located at 1018 S York Rd in Elmhurst will be eligible to help raise funds for Feral Fixers. Just bring a coupon with you when you make your purchase, fill it out and give it to the clerk when you make your payment - that's all you have to do. Feral Fixers can earn up to 30% of purchases made that day at that store. So, load up for the holidays - you're going to be buying ice cream anyway, yes? You can download a flyer here that will give you more information about this fundraiser.

November 20th, 2011 - Bensenville Tree Lighting Festival. This is the fourth year that Feral Fixers has been invited to participate in the Bensenville Holiday Magic festival. Bensenville was one of the very first communities in DuPage County to 'get it' when it comes to feral cats and we're regularly invited to their events. On November 20th, there will be a Chili cook-off, and kettle-corn, taffy-apples, hot chocolate and hot dogs will be available for all. This event is held at the Bensenville Town Center, at the corner of Green and Center streets. Check out their website for more details.

November 29th, 2011Sweet Tomatoes Fun-raiser! We have booked another event at the Sweet Tomatoes Restaurant located at 2820 Highland Avenue in Lombard (630-932-5009). If you come for a meal between 5:00pm and 8:00pm on November 29th, please give a copy of this flyer to the person collecting your money. Sweet Tomatoes will donate 15% of all proceeds collected from people bringing that flyer to Feral Fixers! Come out, bring a friend and join us for a great dinner and help Feral Fixers!

January 15th, 2012 - Frosty Claws! This will be our fourth annual Frosty Claws get-together and fundraiser. It's going to be held at the VFW Hall located at 39 E St. Charles Road in Villa Park. Planning is in the very early stages and more details will be posted soon. Mark your calendars now!
Coin Purse Shop for Feral Fixers

Want to purchase something purr-fect for your cat-lover friends and help out Feral Fixers at the same time?  Just visit our CafePress store and Buy Something! In addition to the Sack Pack shown to the right, we have T-shirts, sweatshirts, aprons, hoodies, mouse pads, gym bags, messenger bags, coffee mugs, tote-bags, pet food bowls, etc. A portion of each sale goes to help us in our TNR efforts.

To visit the store, just click on the Sack Pack or visit our website and click on the 'CafePress' button at the top - Thank you!
Sick Cat
sick cat
Learning more about FIP

Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP) is a fatal, incurable disease that affects cats.  Our President, Tammy, states that:

"We have a bunch of kittens that appear to die of FIP every couple of months, usually because they came from overcrowded, overbred colonies but we also have the individual kittens, even up to one year that succumb to this and there is no way to forecast.  Shelters of course, have the same problems, fewer because they get kittens when they are older."

Recently we came across a very good 'fact sheet' describing FIP, what cause it, how is diagonsed, etc.  This article, written by the good people at Pawprints & Purrs, Inc. can be found on our website or accessed directly here.

There is a lot of good information on the Pawprints & Purrs, Inc. website and is well worth a visit.
WWW GraphicVisit us on the Web 

Visit our website at www.feralfixers.org.  There you can donate to us (via PayPal or credit card), visit our store, read the latest news, and learn more about feral cats.

If this newsletter has been forwarded to you, you can also sign up to be on our mailing list so you don't miss a thing!
What is Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR)?

TNR CatTNR is a full management plan in which stray and feral cats already living outdoors in cities, towns, and rural areas are humanely trapped, evaluated, vaccinated, and sterilized by veterinarians.

When space is available, adoptable cats and kittens are transferred to sheltering organizations to be adopted into good homes. Healthy adult cats unsocialized to humans are returned to their familiar habitat under the lifelong care of their original caretakers.
Feral Fixers, NFP, is a certified 501c3 corporation - EIN Number 13-4364615