Remembering Human Touch
There are extra benefits and heartaches to only TNR'ing 2 or 3 cats at a time. With a small number, if they are manageable, we have the cages to accommodate them in a more comfortable environment for their pre and post-surgery care. With a group larger than 6, or for the truly feral, we must keep them in the traps. When we are able to hold them in cages they get to have comfortable amenities for their stay and we get the opportunity to interact with them more. The benefit of this arrangement is when many of them transition from frightened and hissing to calm and friendly with our attention and touch. The heartache is then having to let them go to release them back to living outdoors.
Community cats, and more specifically lost, abandoned or stray, quite often go into what we call 'survival mode'. Even lost cats often won’t respond to the familiar voice of a well known and loved owner when in this 'mode', hence why so many lost animals are never found or assumed dead by their owners who do not implement other means of locating them. Colony Caregivers that have fed cats for months and even years, are quite often never given the privilege of touching many of the cats they so lovingly care for every day.
Yet in our personal experience of trapping and caring for these same animals in a caged environment, we have found that once confined and given the opportunity to remember human contact that they quite often, and surprisingly quickly, revert back to 'domestic' mode. Those that do make our hearts sing and yet break them at the same time. What was their story? How did they end up struggling on the streets? Why do so many people still not even care?
Bless every Colony Caregiver who feeds, shelters and gets their colony altered and vaccinated. Without them the world of all the beautiful, neglected and overlooked community cats would be so hopeless. Thank you for making it easier on our hearts knowing we are releasing them back into your loving and compassionate care. Joan & the JL Team