|Practicing and promoting Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) in DuPage County, Illinois
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 #39 - May 2012|
It's only the middle of spring, but so many of the flowers are almost done blooming! At least many of us were able to get an early start on our vegetable gardens, so we can look for a payoff on that somewhere down the road...
In her monthly Letter From the President
, Tammy talks about several issues, and emphasizes how the efforts of groups such as ours is having a very positive effect on the number of unwanted kittens being born and the consequent decreasing load on shelters. We can only hope this trend continues!
We hope to see all of you at West Chicago's BloomingFest
this coming weekend - details later on in this eNewsletter.
Thank you again for all of your support.
| Letter From the President |Where to Start?So Far...
So far, this year, we have neutered almost 250 cats. There were more females than males, from our database I show at least 140 were females. Multiply that by 4 potential kittens (and the litters so far have been 5 or 6 kittens) and you have 520 kittens prevented. WOW! And that is not including subsequent births by the end of the year by the kittens born at the beginning of the year! And so on, and so on.
No wonder that DuPage County still is not overrun with kittens. In fact they are doing specials on older cats and hopefully they will find a home, even during "kitten season!
Instead of 10 calls a day, we are down to two to three. We're keeping our head above water so far and are able to address those situations that we are contacted about. We may never be able to go back to those we didn't call back last year, hopefully they have not lost hope and will contact us again. We have found that locations never go away forever, we always hear from people again if all of the cats were not neutered. What is very cool is that we will get one or two calls from people who are within a block or two of each other and then we are able to work with them both at the same time. People really are paying attention!Shelters Stepping Up
Due to the shortage of kittens up to now, we have been able to get more of our kittens into shelters this year than ever before. This means that the shelters handle the adoptions and in some cases, they are taking them before the kittens have been vetted, which frees us up to continue to TNR. It is the fostering and maintenance of the kittens that costs us time that could be used to reduce the numbers even more. In previous years we have been tearing our hair out by this time, swamped beyond belief. We are just about to hit deep water now, so hopefully the shelters will be able to continue to help us - acting as our sandbags against the tide of kittens!!! They've been taking our formerly feral adults, too, and those cats are ever so grateful!You Make So Much Possible
Remember Monte? He had the worst case of ringworm I had ever seen. Well he had weekly lyme dips at the vet for two months (have you ever smelled that stuff? I couldn't do it at home, besides he looked like he couldn't stand himself when he came back smelling of it and I wanted him to LIKE me), and now his coat is completely filled in. He's beautiful and was so tolerant of going into the carrier, even tho he knew what was on the other end. Another cat I was holding got just a bit on one ear and I was able to treat it topically.
It's very hard to say no when a cat is in need. We've had several cats who were 10 years and above that were given up by their families. No vet care for years, needing dentals but still wonderful, viable cats. They, of course, need time to chill out and get a better outlook on life. Because of you, our donors, our support, we are able to get that vet care for them and get them on the road to better homes that will be there for the rest of their lives.This just in!
Both of our former ringworm kitties (Monte & Indy) went to a shelter today for adoption - yay!Coming Up
Come see us at BloomingFest
in West Chicago on May 19th. We've never attended this event before, looking forward to it! There is a large Hispanic population in West Chicago. If you speak Spanish and would like to hang out with us that day and answer questions for us, it would be tremendous help! We can usually get by, but forming complete sentences and being sure of communicating would be ideal!
Our next Sweet Tomatoes is on May 22nd - Hope to see you there!
Our matching funds donor is at it again - look for details in next month's newsletter!Wishes
I've updated our Wish List with Walmart - enter Feral Fixers for first and last name, May 2012 and Illinois to get to our list. Several people made donations - its really great to have boxes of cat litter show up at your door - no driving to the store, wheeling the cart thru the store with the heavy cat litter, loading it into your car, unloading it from your car...it was worth so much more than a donation of cat litter, it was a donation relieving me of my time and effort that would have been involved. Priceless! We also got garbage bags and litter boxes and toys! All of these are ongoing needs and very much appreciated!
Hope to see you in West Chicago!
|Want 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
| 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.
|Every 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.
| How many cats? - 3,751 !!
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 and in 2011, Feral Fixers had 1,024 cats spayed/neutered. So far in 2012, Feral Fixers has had 246 cats spayed/neutered
This brings us to a total of 3,751 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.
|Donate 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!
|Calendar of Upcoming Events|
May 19th, 2012
- This year for the first time, we are going to host a booth at an event in West Chicago. The event is entitled the "West Chicago Blooming Fest". From the website
: "It combines the West Chicago Garden Club's popular plant sale, with a craft show, children's activities, music, food and fun. Downtown merchants and restaurants get into the act with special promotions, in-store specials and sidewalk sales.
" An additional article about the event can be found here
. So, come on out and show your support for Feral Fixers as we continue our outreach throughout DuPage County.
May 22nd, 2012 - And yet another Sweet 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 May 22nd, 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!September 8th, 2012
- This year, Feral Fixers will again host a booth at the Wood Dale Park District's annual Pet Lover's Showcase
. This is the fourth year in a row that we will have a booth at this event, one that's always a lot of fun for everyone. While details about the event are not yet on the Wood Dale Park District's webpage, mark your calendars now so you don't forget - see you there!
| A.D.O.P.T. partners up with Chili's |A.D.O.P.T. of Naperville
has been very helpful to us - so we'd like to pass on one of their events. The people at Chili's must really like them because their event is ongoing until the end of June! You can go multiple times and sample everything on the menu that way! And you can go to any Chili's location!
to find out more about this event and how to support A.D.O.P.T., one of our favorite organizations!
| 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 child's puzzle shown to the right, we have T-shirts, sweatshirts, aprons, hoodies, mouse pads, gym bags, messenger bags, coffee mugs, tote-bags, pet food bowls, Pajamas etc. A portion of each sale goes to help us in our TNR efforts.
To visit the store, just click on the Puzzle or visit our website
and click on the 'CafePress
' button at the top - Thank you!
|Visit 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 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