|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 #40 - June 2012|
It's June and the weather seems to be getting cooler - very strange weather this year...
Feral Fixers continues to TNR cats at a rapid pace and we are ahead of where we were (in terms of cats TNR'd) last year at this time. We ARE having a positive effect, the anecdotal evidence of the diminished number of feral cats is becoming overwhelming and this is very gratifying.
In her monthly Letter From the President, Tammy talks about the current "Kitten Storm" and what we are doing about it. She also discusses our new ChipIn fundraiser entitled Keep Those Cages Empty!
Our recent appearance at West Chicago's annual BloomingFest was a great success and you can read about this, about TNR related events in such diverse places as Oklahoma, Texas and Ireland, about A.D.O.P.T and Chili's partnering up and much more.
Thank you again for all of your support.
| Letter From The President |
People are not calling County when they discover kittens. They are calling Feral Fixers. Which is a good thing. Previous years, in addition to the calls we got, County would be full of kittens. Now, our fosters, our homes, our basements, are replacing the kitten hallway at County. That is progress. It is also progress that with each litter of FIVE, SIX, SEVEN kittens, we are getting the moms spayed so that they cannot continue to produce later this year or into the next. At the end of May, we had neutered 14 more cats than the same time last year.
We are truly in a torrential downpour of kittens, tho. Seriously, we get calls of FIVE, SIX, SEVEN kittens on a daily basis. And, knock on wood, they are healthy! These moms are doing a fabulous job out there.
The goal of Feral Fixers is to reduce cat overpopulation and euthanization. Clearly, we are making headway. We do need your continued help. If you have the resources to foster for us, that would be invaluable. Mention fostering to your neighbors and family, you never know. We need help to make these kittens as adoptable as possible, because the homes are out there, people are constantly asking for kittens, but we have to be sure the kittens are neutered and well-adjusted before they go on to their new homes and that takes time and fostering.
In order to be sure that we neuter as many cats as possible so that next year there is no Storm, our summer fundraiser is titled "Keep Those Cages Empty." On looking at our symbolic photo, knowing that the cages are empty and knowing they are located at County, your first response might be worry that they are empty because cats were euthanized. Not the case. They are empty because kittens have not been born to fill them due to all of the help you have given us in the past. They have been consistently empty since January of this year. I can't tell you how good that makes me feel!
So, please, help us keep those cages empty for as long as possible. Our generous matching funds donor has pledged $1,000 for "Keep Those Cages Empty" and our goal is to neuter 100 cats with the funds raised. So we need to go beyond matching the initial $1,000 and achieve a total of $3,500 in donations. The expense to us for each feral is $35. Please consider donating enough to neuter one, two or three in order to "Keep Those Cages Empty." Donations can be made thru our website or by mail.
Creating A Demand
Several shelters in the area help us by taking in our kittens and friendly adults for adoption. Our thanks to ADOPT, Felines & Canines, Hinsdale Humane Society, PURRS and West Suburban Humane Society for stepping up and taking in our cats! In some cases, these were bottle babies (big drain on resources), kittens that had not been neutered yet (resources) and FIV+ cats (resources). If you or your family are planning to adopt, ASK if the shelter has any cats that came thru Feral Fixers. Create a demand for our cats. I assure you, they are the best!!!
Cats Still Working Hard to Get To Us
Part of receiving all of these kittens, is the trapping of them. We have the cutest, tiniest traps. About 4 inches square and 18" long at the most. We have had several adult cats, over 10 lbs in weight, squeeze themselves into those traps like sausages in order to get to us. And the sweetest, friendliest cats to boot - lucky for us, as getting a cat to back up, to transfer it into a larger trap, that cannot look over its shoulder at what its backing into is no easy task! Fuzzy and Pepe can be seen on our Facebook page, they are doing great, getting accustomed to being indoors and the consistent food!
|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.
| Keep Those Cages Empty!
Kitten cages at DuPage County Animal Care & Control have been consistently empty since the end of 2011.
Help us to keep them empty by donating the cost to TNR one, two or three ferals and help us keep those cages empty all year long!!!
Our cost for one feral: $35
Our cost for two ferals: $70
Our cost for three ferals: $105
Our generous matching funds donor has once again pledged $1,000 to start off the "Keep Those Cages Empty"
Our goal: To raise enough funds to cover TNR of 100 ferals!
To donate, just visit the Feral Fixers homepage
and click on the ChipIn! button in the box. There, you will be able to donate to our ChipIn campaign via PayPal (you can use your PayPal account or a Credit Card to donate).
Our Fundraiser will end on July 20th. Thank you for helping us reach our goal!(The picture thumbnail is of one of the banks of empty cages at the DuPage County Animal Care & Control facility. Click on it to see a full-size version of the picture.)
| 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.
| Feral News Updates |
In the Feral News Watch section of the Neighborhood Cats website
, there are three articles about the state of Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), each covering a different locale.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma has just approved
a TNR program for their city.
Amarillo, Texas has just denied approval
to TNR and will go on trapping and killing feral cats.
And in Ireland, the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is now raising funds
to start a TNR campaign.
|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.
| Thank you West Chicago! |
On May 19th, Feral Fixers hosted a booth at the annual BloomingFest event held by the City of West Chicago. This was the first time we had hosted an event in that city and it was a great way to spend the day.
We met many, many citizens of West Chicago and got the word out about Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), and we're already receiving phone calls about feral cat colonies in that town.
We also met many West Chicago Civic leaders including the newly appointed mayor, Ruben Pineda. He was brought to our booth by one of our local supporters and discussed TNR with us. We also met members of the Community Service and Police Departments and it is our hope that this is the beginning of a long and fruitful relationship with this city.
So many communities 'get it' now when it comes to TNR and we looking forward to working with West Chicago to help control their feral cat population.
Thank you West Chicago!(Photo thumbnail is of West Chicago Mayor Ruben Pineda visiting the Feral Fixers booth. Click on the thumbnail for a larger-sized picture.)
| How many cats? - 3,806 !!
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 301 cats spayed/neutered
This brings us to a total of 3,806 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|
July 31st, 2012 - 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 July 31st, 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!September 18th, 2012 - 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 September 18th, 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!
| 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 Plush Baseball shown to the right (and it IS baseball season - perfect for your favorite baseball fan), 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 Baseball 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