Here is what you can do
We know from experience your situation can also be frustrating. BandOCats.org estimates the number of feral and stray cats living in central Ohio at One Million - and shelters, humane societies and rescues alike are usually full and it's difficult to find someone to help you.
Well we'll try. Here's what you need to do....
- Feed them
- I know - you're friends will tell you not to, but if you don't, they'll get into your garbage and make a mess, even get sick, and it's likely they'll multiply and your situation will only become worse. Get whatever cat food you can afford and set it out in the morning (not at night, or they will have to compete with raccoons, and likely lose that battle, and your efforts will be wasted). This will not only bring them out into the open, it may make it easier to catch them so homes can be found for them.
- Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Please don't call right away. We are at capacity and cannot take any more cats right now. We operate on a shoestring budget and rarely get any donations. Our cell phones have limited calling. We check our emails every day. If we can help, we can do so more efficiently by emailing you links to answers to specific questions. We're not experts, but we'll do what we can to help.
- Take their pictures
- as many as you can and as close as you can. If you are feeding then, this will be much easier to do. If you can get photos of them we can attempt to get them adopted much sooner. Email the photos to our webmaster at email@example.com along with any information you have on the strays and he'll put them up on our website. Please include contact information so we can contact you if we find someone interested.
- Use Google
- As I mentioned before we're not experts. Most of what we need to find out to help a cat in distress, we find online.
- List your pet on Hoobly.com or Oodle
- Ask for a small re-homing fee - at least more than the price of a chicken from the grocery store. People tend to take care of things they have to pay for, and if you charge a fee, your pet is less likely to end up in the belly of someone's pet snake. Tell the story of how you found it and helped it. Make it heart-wrenching if you can!
- If you use Craigslist...
- Again, be sure to charge a re-homing fee so your pet doesn't become a meal. Use all of the above techniques in your ad.
- Download and print our flyer
- Distribute it, pin it to bulletin boards, mail it in with your bill payments. Remember, the person who sees that ad may want the kitty you're helping!
- Most of all - BE PATIENT
- Chances are that little creature is starving and frightened through no fault of its own. Your patience can change a life, not only of that creature, but of whomever is fortunate enough to adopt it. Your kindness can go a long way in affecting the lives of others, and you'll sleep peacefully at night knowing you've done the right thing.
If you can catch it... and you can afford it, there are services listed to the left that are low cost. please use them and encourage others to do so also.
- Get it tested for feline leukemia
- ...before exposing it to other cats.
- Get it spayed or neutered
- ...so at least they won't contribute to the overpopulation problem
- Get it vaccinated
- ... so it doesn't get any diseases and pass them on to other pets.
Many times some of the cost of doing these things can be recouped by charging a small re-homing fee.
Cats are a joy! They are low maintenance. They can live indoors and out. They keep pests away from the house. They're funny and entertaining.
Learn more about them here