BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – A day once known as Global Cat Day or National Feral Cat Day, many animal organizations are now encouraging a new name, National Community Cat Day.
It encompasses all cats, whether stray, feral, or outdoor, throughout the community. The day is meant to bring awareness to the community cat populations and the risks that come with them.
“We need to have people informed, that way when a cat population settles into your neighborhood you don’t immediately want to feed these cats because sometimes that causes the problem. To be able to get information out to people that may not have heard it before will help keep the communities down,” says Tori Meator, an Animal Rescue Coordinator for the Raleigh County Humane Society.
Cats that roam the community face a lot more risks than your average indoor cat, but these neighborhood cats can also pose risks too, from spreading diseases and parasites to other cats to overpopulating at rapid, even habitat-endangering levels.
“The big thing that feral cats do is they can pose a big threat to the immediate level of wildlife. And also there is the thing that they overpopulate, they reproduce very, very quickly,” she says.
This national cat day is not only about shedding light on these issues, but helping to find ways of stopping them. You can do so by supporting the growing number of policies and programs local humane societies offer that safely protect and manage community cat populations. One such program is the TNR, Trap-Neuter-Release Program.
“They’ll set up traps, they’ll trap either some of the females or males, they’ll get them fixed, ear-tipped, give them their first vaccines, and they’ll set them back out to where they were originally from,” says Meator. “Having local cat colonies is something we can’t avoid because it’s happened for years now, but with local TNR programs hopefully, it’s something we can get a hold on here.”
Programs like these have been shown to be very effective at safely and humanely managing cat populations. Local humane societies encourage everyone to help cat populations by utilizing the TNR policy in your neighborhood whenever you can.
For more information regarding the protection and control of local cat populations around your neighborhood and what you can do to help, you can visit the Raleigh County Humane Society at hsrcwv.org or by calling (304)-253-8921 to learn about the cat programs they offer.