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 #58 - June, 2015
In This Issue
Letter from the President
Jamberry Nails online fundraiser!
Don't forget to follow us on Facebook!
Feral Fixers Wish List
Want to Help?
Flower Power Online Fundraiser!
Fosters are needed now!
A new Fundraising Partner!
Celebrate 5500 T-Shirts now on Sale!
Shop on ebay - Help Feral Fixers!
How many cats? - 7,620!!
'Cat Island'
Shop on Amazon - Help Feral Fixers!
Donate to Feral Fixers
Event Calendar
Shop for Feral Fixers
Visit us on the Web
What is Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR)?
About us
Dear Friend,

So much is going on, but there is still so much more to do!  This newsletter is jam-packed with items once again!

First up us the latest installment of Letter from the President.  Feral Fixers President lets everyone know that we are not taking any cats to PAWS on June 11th.  None, nada, zilch...  Tammy also talks about how cats sometimes act as "canaries in the coal mine" when it comes to environmental issues at home, our numbers of cats spayed/neutered this year, kittens, kittens, kittens and other items of note.

We also highlight ongoing fundraisers from jamberry nails and Flower Power, introduce Animal Hearted as our newest fundraising partner, and also our ongoing need for FOSTERS!

We take a visit to "Cat Island" in Japan, share our spay/neuter statistics and a very busy Event Calendar (including another Adoption Event with PetSmart on June 27th) and much, much, more!

Thank you for reading and thank you for support of Feral Fixers!


Feral Fixers
Letter from the President

No Cats June 11th


No cats will be transported to PAWS on June 11th. Taking a much needed break. Actually need more than one week, but it will have to do. Tell everyone you know, forward the information, cat gets into a trap we will give you the directions to go to PAWS yourself, have a good trip. We will be back at it on the 18th. See you then.


Indoor & Outdoor Cats Are Our Canaries In A Mineshaft


Back in the days when coal miners worked far beneath the earth in tiny shafts, bad air would build up - natural gas & methane & more. An early warning system they utilized (before mechanical air systems) was to bring a cage with a bird in it down into the shaft with them. When it fell over, it was time to exit the shaft - fast. Canaries are no longer used in this fashion, but the phrase "canaries in a mineshaft" sticks with us as a measurement of hazards we encounter. Feral cats and cats in general seem to be our environmental (both in-home and outdoors) alarms of hazards we are willingly tolerating for ourselves with a long-term negative outcome for the cats. It's not an immediate response but should be taken seriously.


Recently I was asked my opinion on why cats seem to all get sick with the same ailments, kidney, thyroid and cancer. So when this article popped up, I decided to share it with you (the original report is here).


And, while talking about dangers in the home, second hand smoke is a very real threat; see here and here (also on our facebook).


Being a "cat resource" we often get calls about the symptoms that cats are exhibiting and the pet parents are frustrated because they can't find a reason for the eye and nose drainage, the sores that are developing on the cats' bodies, etc. I've taken to asking whether the pet parent smokes, following up with asking how many scented products they use in their home. Even if you smoke out on the patio, the smoke blows in and is on your clothing. Even tho the scented fabric softener vents to the outside, the carpet deodorizer gets vacuumed up, the automatic air freshener only goes off once an hour, the cats are in your home 24/7 and the toxicity builds in their system of all the chemicals in the cigarettes, cleansers and fresheners. Several people have quit smoking and removed chemicals in their homes to find that their cats resolve all the symptoms that were so mystifying.


While research has not been done on cats in regards to the environmental effects of pesticides and herbicides, it is having an impact on children who play on treated soccer fields - it is sure to have similar impact on smaller creatures who spend their lives on our lawns.


Since we've been doing this for more than seven years, we've seen how the environment the cats are living in can impact successive generations. We've seen how three different cats from a neighborhood all come down with cancer by the time they are five. Seen where cats living in an industrial area all have food allergies and chronic health conditions. We don't have the time or finances to do a complete study, it's all anecdotal, but should not be disregarded.


Cats start out at just a few ounces and average 10 to 20 pounds upon adulthood. Ingesting chemicals their whole lives can have extreme ramifications. These are chemicals that have been tested on a very limited basis on the theory that only 100+ lb humans would encounter them intermittently - and still they have nasty side effects! Cats are our canaries in the mine shaft, please consider them when making purchases and decisions that can affect not only your pets but feral cats that roam our lawns!


Our Numbers Are Lower This Year


While we are only down 61 cats from last year at this time, it comes after 7 years of steady growth numbers. Hopefully one of the reasons our numbers are lower than last years' so far is that there are, in fact, fewer cats remaining to be neutered. But also it is because we just don't have a sufficient number of volunteers to do many of the numerous tasks that need doing.


* All of our weekly transporters have developed health issues that are resulting in their taking several months off from transport - which reduces the numbers we are able to take in to the clinic.

* Many of the people who helped by coordinating caretakers and trapping around where they live or work are no longer able to do so = we just can't get to the cats in a timely manner, or are using lots of gas and time to do so.

* Many of our fosters have had life changes and are no longer able to foster our friendly adults or kittens = volunteers who did trapping are now fostering.


And the list goes on.


Everyone has lives of their own. We understand that. We are really tired tho.


There are still cats to be done. Please contact us to volunteer!


Kittens, Kittens, Kittens


Not all of our shelter partners have been able to take kittens, but West Suburban Humane Society and ADOPT of Naperville have been going neck and neck in accepting litters of kittens and adults from us. Every week we are on the phone to see what they can absorb from us - which means that their fosters are doing a great job, too!


We're being very careful to get the kittens from each location this year, even more than ever before. We do not want even one to stay, remain unneutered and make more for the following year, or even yet THIS year. Everyone we talk to has seen a reduction in the numbers of kittens they are receiving, which is absolutely music to our ears. And we are having even greater success in trapping the moms at the same time so that they cannot go on to make more.


When you hear something over and over, it tends to lose its impact, yet we must announce again:




It can't be emphasized enough! We have said before that it is not an easy job, but it is very rewarding and so necessary. Until we "fill up" our shelter partners, the kittens go to them as soon as they are eating on their own and healthy. After the shelter fosters are full, we hold onto the kittens until they are of age to be neutered and socialized enough to go out on the adoption floor. Once we fill up that space, our fosters hold onto the kittens until they are adopted. We promote the cats those shelters have taken because every adoption creates more room for cats to come in. We try to keep the flow going all summer long as best we can, we absolutely would prefer to adopt out cats than hold onto them. The commitment therefore could be just a week or two, a month or several months, depending on the "market" flow. Some kittens may be moved between several fosters before they find their furrever home - which can result in a very well-rounded cat! Takes a village is absolutely true.


Fundraisers & Events


We love it when a merchant wants to help us help the cats! We have a Jamberry Nails fundraiser starting June 1st and check out our Flower Power fundraiser - shop for Feral Fixers from the comfort of your online "home"! Citadel Information Management is doing their part to protect your identity by hosting Shred4Rescues on June 20th, Feral Fixers will be there - please stop by and say hello! We are always interested in offering events and merchandise where our donors can get/do what they want/need and benefit Feral Fixers as well. Please keep us in mind! 

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 - many times 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 Fixers Wish List

SPECIAL NOTE - We have recently updated our Wish List on this site.  If you haven't visited it recently, we invite you to do so again in the near future - Thank you!

Want to help Feral Fixers by purchasing something that we really could use?  Then check out our Wish List on Amazon.  It contains many items listed that we would greatly appreciate and they are shipped directly to us!

This is a wonderful way to help Feral Fixers.  Many people prefer to support a charitable organization by purchasing items for them rather than sending them a donation and this is a way you can do so.

To find the Feral Fixers Wish List on, just go to their website and click on the Wish List link near the top, right-hand corner of the page.  Then enter the words "Feral Fixers" (without the quotation marks) into the box that says "Find Someone's Wish List" and hit Enter.  You'll then be presented with all of the items currently on that Feral Fixers would like to have.  Add the item(s) you wish to donate to your Shopping Cart in the normal manner and, when you pay for them, they'll be ordered and shipped directly to Feral Fixers!

And, if you order from the AmazonSmile website (see instructions elsewhere in this eNewsletter for instructions on how to do so), you'll help us in an additional way - you'll have donated one or more items to us AND 1/2% of your purchase price will also be additionally donated to Feral Fixers (this only applies to items that are so eligible - shown in the description of them item).

Thank you!
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
Fosters are needed now!

We currently have lots adult cats that have decided that the life inside is for them!  And the kitten avalanche is happening NOW!  Many of these adults are very calm and so very grateful for the opportunity to come inside - please help us, help them!  And, although they can be messy, who can resist a litter of kittens!

We do our best to work with fosters but they need to:  
  • Be in easy driving distance of Lombard - emergencies happen and being 45 minutes away, one way, is just not a good idea.
  • Have only one or few animals of their own - asking someone to take on 4 additional cats when they already have 4++ animals on hand could be a problem
  • Spend a reasonable amount of time at home - someone who travels or has long work days cannot sufficiently support the behavior modification that is sometimes necessary with young kittens
Be clear about expectations of us and ask plenty of questions!

In return, fosters receive so much love and affection from these cats and the knowledge that they are part of the pipeline of Rescue - getting them ready for their forever homes!

Please, Help Us Help Them!
A new Fundraising Partner

Feral Fixers latest fundraising affiliate is Animal Hearted Apparel, " animal centered apparel company based out of California. Our goal is to make the world a better place by supporting organizations like yours that are dedicated to improving the lives of animals in need. We are dedicated to donating 25% of our proceeds to non-profit animal shelters and rescue organizations around the world."

They have some very cool items for sale, T-shirts, hats, tank tops, etc., and all of it animal-themed.

If you visit their website and enter the Discount Code SUPPORTFERALFIXERS at Checkout, you will receive a 10% discount and, best of all, Feral Fixers receives 25% of all proceeds!

So, get stylish and help Feral Fixers at the same time!
Celebrate 5500 T-Shirts now on Sale!

The highly-collectible T-Shirts which were given out to attendees of the Celebrate 5500! event are now for sale for only $10 each (including shipping to anywhere in the US)!

Limited quantities are still available and can be ordered from the Feral Fixers website.  Don't delay - they're going fast!

Click on the T-Shirt to buy!
Shop on ebay - Help Feral Fixers!

Did you know that some of your purchases on ebay can directly help Feral Fixers?  When a seller posts an item, they can designate a charity to donate a portion of the proceeds to.  Several people have done so for Feral Fixers.  When you purchase one or more of these items, a portion of the sale is donated directly to Feral Fixers!

You don't have to register anything, submit any coupons, fill out any forms, etc.  All you have to do is to purchase an item whose seller has designated Feral Fixers as their Charity of Choice.

If you follow this link, you can see all the items on ebay that have Feral Fixers as a designated charity.

Our thanks to those sellers who have so-designated Feral Fixers - your contributions are greatly appreciated!  And, if you are a seller and would like to start designating Feral Fixers as a Charity, instructions on how to do so are shown on the same page.

Thank you!
How many cats? - 7,587!!

# of cats fixed

Clicking on the friendly Computer Terminal will send you to the Feral Fixers 'Statistics' page where you can see our progress, month-by-month, since we've started work.
'Cat Island'

On Japan's Aoshima Island, cats outnumber humans.

From the article:

"Originally introduced to the mile-long island of Aoshima to deal with mice that plagued fishermen's boats, the cats stayed on - and multiplied. More than 120 cats swarm the island with only a handful of humans for company, mostly pensioners who didn't join the waves of migrants seeking work in the cities after World War Two."

The article has a short video and a link to a number of pictures.  The last picture notes that they have begun spay/neutering these cats - it's always possible to have too much of a good thing!

(Click on the picture thumbnail to see a full-size version of the picture)
Shop on Amazon - Help Feral Fixers!

Feral Fixers is now a designated charity on, the website which offers a gazillion items for sale.  A great many of these items have been designated eligible for "amazonsmile", a program that automatically donates 1/2% of the purchase price of the item to the charity of your choice.

Instead of signing on to, sign on to instead.  You'll then be able to designate a "Favorite charity".  Enter "Feral Fixers" where asked to and then Feral Fixers will be eligible for these donations.

In order for you to then purchase amazonsmile items, you will always need to sign in to  This is the same website you've always enjoyed - all of the products are still listed, but note that not every item on Amazon is "amazonsmile" eligible.  Items that are eligible are clearly designated as such in the description.

So, register Feral Fixers as your favorite charity and help us help the cats!

Thank you!
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!
Event Calendar  


June 20, 2015 - Shred4Rescues - On this date, Feral Fixers will once again participate in Citadel Information Management's SHRED4RESCUES event. For items that are brought in for shredding, Citadel will ask for a donation ($3 per box or bag) and will then distribute these proceeds to all of the local rescues (including Feral Fixers!) participating in this event! So, if you have a lot of stuff that needs shredding and you aren't looking forward to a long evening or two sitting in front of your office shredder, box the stuff up, bring it to this event, make a donation, get it shredded and help Feral Fixers! The event will be held in the parking lot of Citadel Information Systems (827 Blackhawk Drive in Westmont). More information can be found on this flyer. A slideshow of the 2014 Shred4Rescues event can be seen here.


June 27, 2015 - PetsMart Adoption Event!! - Feral Fixers will be hosting an adoption event at the PetSmart located at 63 Rice Lake Square in Wheaton from 11am to 3pm. All of our cats/kittens are in Foster homes, are spayed/neutered, current on their vaccinations, microchipped, dewormed and FeLV/FIV tested. If you would like to get pre-approved for same-day adoption, please email us (by Thursday, June 25th) at You can see all of our adoptable cats by clicking on the "Adoptable Cats" link at the top of our website.


FlowerPower Fundraising Event! - Now through October 15th, you can help Feral Fixers by purchasing items from Flower Power Fundraising! It's not too soon to begin thinking about next year's garden and the folks at Flower Power Fundraising can help you beautify it. Feral Fixers gets 50% of the purchase price and, best of all, purchased items get shipped directly to you at the proper time for planting. To learn more about this fundraiser and to see what you might want to purchase, click here. Thank you!

jamberry nails Fundraising Event! - Now through July 31st, our good friends at jamberry nails are holding an online fundraiser for Feral Fixers! jamberry nails has been at the last several Shop4Strays events and their booth was always very popular. Now they want to help us raise money with this online fundraiser. 20% of all sales will be donated directly to Feral Fixers. To participate, just visit and choose the "Feral Fixers Online Jamberry Fundraiser" at Checkout. Thank you!

September 19, 2015 - Friends of DuPage County Animal Care & Control Fall Festival - Feral Fixers will again be hosting a booth at this annual event. We've hosted a booth here for the past several (seven ?) years and it's always a great time. Lots of activities and things to do! Details will be posted on our website when available.


September 27, 2015 - Barkapalooza! - Once again (for the ninth year), Feral Fixers will be hosting a booth at this annual event. It's always a great event and, if you love dogs, this is the place to be! Details will be posted on our website when available.

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 Water Bottle shown to the right, we have T-shirts, sweatshirts, aprons, mouse pads, gym bags, messenger bags, coffee mugs, tote-bags, pet food bowls, Pajamas and much, much more! A portion of each sale goes to help us in our TNR efforts.

To visit the store, just click on the Water Bottle or visit our website and click on the 'CafePress' button at the top - Thank you!
Visit us on the Web 

Visit our website at  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