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Helping Homeless Cats

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1. Visit the Homeless Cats

Spending time every week with homeless cats is a great way to help them build trust. However, it’s important to respect their limits. Some cats may eventually allow you to pet or play with them while others will never let you get much closer than a couple of feet away. Either way, your presence is benefitting the cats.

2. Donate to Your Local Shelter

Whether it’s basic health exams, rabies vaccinations, or spay/neuter surgeries, local shelters and animal welfare organizations provide a multitude of resources to homeless cats. Help them out by donating money or supplies such as food, blankets, or toys.

3. Volunteer at Your Local Shelter

Providing your time is another great way to support the shelters and animal welfare organizations that help homeless cats. Stop by to play with the cats, clean a few litter boxes, or assist in organizing a fundraising event for the shelter — every little bit counts.

4. Consider Fostering a Homeless Cat

Most animal shelters are filled to capacity and can use volunteers who are willing to open their homes and maintain the cats until they can find a permanent residence. Young homeless kittens and abused cats benefit the most from the close interaction and constant care.

5. Provide Outdoor Shelter

Cats don’t need a lot of space, just a space that is large enough for them to stand and move about and stay safe from the harshest outdoor elements. Homemade shelters can be crafted out of nearly anything: from a cardboard box (think of the heavy cardboard used for packing television sets) to an anchored plastic garbage can. Consult the local cat shelter to learn what would work best in your area.

6. Provide Food and Water

According to the Humane Society, bans against feeding feral cats do not make the cats go away. In fact, quite the opposite occurs. They tend to move closer into human neighborhoods as they grow more hungry and desperate. Practice compassion and set up a feeding and water station for homeless cats.

7. Book a Vet Appointment

Homeless cats often suffer from a variety of diseases some of which can quickly spread among other cats and even to humans. If possible, bring your neighborhood feral cat to a veterinarian for a health check-up and to spay or neuter the cat if it has not already undergone the procedure.

8. Promote Spaying and Neutering

Want to help put a stop to the needless euthanization of millions of adoptable cats that are "put to sleep" in shelters every year? Coordinate with the local animal shelters or animal control agencies to develop a spay/neuter outreach program in your community.

9. Report Animal Cruelty

Just because cats are homeless doesn’t mean they deserve any less decency than your pets. Should you witness people abusing the cats, report it to your local police department or animal control agency. Local humane organizations or animal shelters can sometimes be of assistance as well.

10. Educate Others About Homeless Cats

Speak to your neighbors about the plight of homeless cats and encourage friends to help the cats in whatever way they can.

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  • 08/18/2012 02:19pm

    I had a kitten dropped at my door this week, I live in Syracuse, NY and will be taking her to live at my brothers house today who lives in Windsor, NY. I know who dropped her off and thought about putting the kitten in a box, placing it at the persons from door with a note that says "here's your cat back" but then I decided that the kitten would just become a stray and that I could place her in a good home and started asking friends and family. My brother Alan and his wife April are going to be the proud parents of one adorable little kitty today.

  • Stray Cats
    08/29/2012 05:28pm

    I DON'T LIKE how we have to pay for spaying and neutering stray cats and then release them, back into the neighborhoods to kill birds, chipmunks, squirrels, etc. There are millions of them.

  • stray cats
    11/01/2012 06:51pm

    Tony, the alternative to tnr is euthanizing the outside cats. i know its a worn out line, but they really didn't ask to be homeless. yes, there are millions, which is why we say save one cat. or one dog. or one animal. it won't make a big difference in the world. but it will make a huge difference in that animal's world.

  • Stray Cats
    12/16/2012 03:44pm

    Tony, F.Y.I., Feral cats also kill rats, snakes, diseased birds, etc. which is something most humans appreciate!

  • 05/06/2013 04:58pm

    hi i am priyanka from india. i lv cats so much.and i read your all topics.it is very bad about india.here people hv no feelings for cat& kittens.human has no value so how a cat ,dog ,cow and other animal will hv. i feel so bad about this,here everyone is just a self centered person.no shelter home for animal not even for human's properly. i pray for those who's helping these cute and need lovely pets and running a shelter home for them.