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June 20, 2014

What You Can Do to Help Feral Cats

Help a feral cat near you!

The Humane Society of the United States estimates that there are as many as 50 million feral cats in the United States.

Whether you're concerned about, indifferent to, or annoyed by feral cats, reducing their numbers is vital. Find out what you can do to help feral cats in your community.

As an individual

If you're feeding feral cats, you obviously care about them. Feeders who don't realize or can't find resources to get the cats spayed and neutered while their numbers are manageable, are soon overwhelmed by kittens, kittens, and more kittens. Don't let this happen to you or the cats. Our 16-minute video and FAQ will help you understand how to provide the best care possible to your feral cats. 

Find help

If you're really lucky, there is an organization or agency in your community that can help you trap-neuter-return the feral cats you're feeding. If this help isn't available in your community, you may still be able to find veterinarians who are willing to provide low-cost services for feral cats. Look for help near you on our map (it includes all U.S. states) »

If you're still having trouble finding help, send us an email.

Provide help

Organizations and agencies that help feral cats need all the help they can get. Even if you've never seen a feral cat, it's likely that there are feral cats in your community. You can make a big difference in your community by:

As an organization

Often, your good work is hampered by a lack of funds. There are many ways to feed the kitty and begin or continue your efforts. Animal Sheltering magazine has information on groups that offer financial assistance and a collection of articles on grant writing. There are also articles that offer fundraising ideas.

Get a little help from your friends

There aren't enough hours in the day when it comes to helping feral cats. Volunteers can assist you in many ways. Find out how to recruit and retain volunteers.

Lay down the law

The number of organizations devoted to helping feral cats is growing. As a result, some local governments now recognize that a comprehensive cat management strategy to combat cat overpopulation requires working with feral cat advocates. Work with officials to propose legislation that affects domestic cats—especially feral cats.

For specific information about laws and ordinances regarding outdoor and community cats, email cats@humanesociety.org.

Get the word out

People with big hearts often provide food to feral cats. Unfortunately, they may not realize the importance of spaying and neutering or they may not even know that there's anyone who can help them.

Check out our information in English and Spanish that you can distribute at events, libraries, veterinary clinics, feed stores, pet supply stores, etc. And don't forget the media—our "I am not a crazy cat lady" flyer is sure to be noticed.

Book it

Need some help educating your community? Why reinvent the wheel when our CD/DVD and books, "Community Approaches to Feral Cats" and "Implementing a Community TNR Program," are available?  

Get in touch

If you're not on our list of organizations and agencies that help community cats, let us know. We want to promote your good work and help those who need you find you. The HSUS has many more resources, so let us know if you're looking for a doorhanger, letters to veterinarians, PowerPoint presentations, and more.

As an official

You're not alone. More and more municipalities are seeking effective strategies to manage feral cats in their communities. Feral cat management is a complex and emotional issue, to say the least. We're here to help!

Déjà vu

Many strategies over the years have been used to reduce the number of feral cats. Here's a short video of what's been done and what you can do to effectively manage feral cats in your community. Need more information? Read our FAQ.

Come together

If you're lucky, there is an organization in your community helping feral cats: check out our list. Collaboration is essential for a community wide feral cat management plan to be successful. Don't reinvent the wheel. Our book, Implementing a Community TNR Program, may be just what you need. Foundations today are looking for collaborative efforts to fund and a feral cat management program may be very attractive to them.

Can we help?

The HSUS has many resources. If there's something you need that isn't available, don't hesitate to email us at cats@humanesociety.org. Working together we can save money and lives and make communities safer and healthier for all its citizens.


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