April 26, 2010
HSVMA Seeks Nominations for 'Best Friend to Feral Cats' Award
The Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association is seeking nominations for the first-ever HSVMA "Best Friend to Feral Cats" award. The award is designed to recognize a veterinary professional — veterinarian, veterinary technician, veterinary student or veterinary technician student — who has significantly helped feral cats.
Feral cats are a major contributor to the cat overpopulation problem in the United States. The exact number of feral cats is unknown, but projected to be up to 50 million, producing an estimated 147 million kittens annually. Sadly, the majority of feral kittens do not survive to adulthood, and almost 100 percent of the feral cats brought to shelters are euthanized because they cannot be adopted as pets.
"Veterinary professionals play a critical role in helping reduce the number of feral cats and improving their lives. Trap-Neuter-Return programs, which involve trapping and sterilizing the cats, have been shown to effectively reduce the population of feral cats in a community," said Susan Krebsbach, DVM of the HSVMA. "These programs depend on veterinary professionals to perform the sterilization surgeries. Veterinary professionals can also help feral cats in other ways, such as educating their clients about the issue, providing services to those who are taming and adopting out feral kittens, and stressing the importance of spaying and neutering pet cats before they have even one litter."
The HSVMA's "Best Friend to Feral Cats" is designed to recognize a veterinary professional who has demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to helping feral cats in their community. Nominations will be accepted through May 31 via an online nomination form. Nomination forms can also be downloaded and mailed in. The winner will be announced on July 1 and will receive an award recognizing their achievement. The nominator of the winner will also receive a special feline-related prize.
For more information, visit hsvma.org.
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The Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association was formed as a home for veterinary professionals who want to join together to speak out for animals, engage in direct care programs for animals in need, and educate the public and others in the profession about animal welfare issues. The HSVMA is an affiliate of The Humane Society of the United States.