When performed on a large scale, the success of such a program is felt at animal shelters where fewer cats are admitted for
euthanasia. In addition, TNR has been shown to be more cost effective than trapping and euthanizing feral cats since most
states require impoundment and holding prior to euthanasia and since private individuals frequently volunteer to trap cats
for sterilization but not for euthanasia.
Relocation of feral cat colonies is almost always unsuccessful and is not advised since cats possess strong homing instincts
and will try to return to their original home base.
It is important to recognize that a TNR program alone cannot solve the problem of free-roaming cats in the face of continuous
emigration from the owned cat population. They do, however, hold great merit as a legitimate response to existing colonies
of cats with caretakers and raise public awareness of the welfare issues facing cats in this country. TNR programs emphasize
to communities that cats require and deserve responsible care, including sterilization, vaccination, identification, and regular
feeding, watering and shelter. Clearly, the bulk of the effort in combating feline overpopulation and feral cats must focus
Dr. Hoskins is owner of DocuTech Services. He is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine with
specialities in small animal pediatrics. He can be reached at (225) 955-3252, fax: (214) 242-2200, or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org