Maryann Ostrenga's concerns regarding the Wauwatosa feral cat population (May 29 Public Forum letter) can be eased with three letters: TNR.
Community/feral cats produce the majority of kittens turned in to animal control facilities like the Milwaukee Area Domestic Animal Control Commission. For decades, trap-and-kill has been the method of choice by animal control to reduce community/feral cat populations. This method is costly to taxpayers and has repeatedly been shown to be ineffective.
Municipalities around the country have embraced a non-lethal approach — Trap-Neuter-Return. In a TNR program, community cats are humanely trapped, evaluated by a veterinarian, spayed/neutered, vaccinated against rabies, ear-tipped (so someone finding the cat knows it has been spayed/neutered/evaluated), and returned to the habitat where they were originally trapped
Milwaukee County currently has no program in place to humanely reduce the community/feral cat population. TNR — using volunteers and available grant funding — improves public health, decreases nuisance complaints and stabilizes/reduces the number of feral cats and kittens.
As a Wauwatosa resident, I want the same things Ms. Ostrenga does. However, mass killing of community cats leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
A sensible TNR policy is good fiscal and ethical policy. Contact your local representative and ask them to enact TNR legislation.
Alley Cat Allies (www.alleycat.org) and The Humane Society of the United States (www.humanesociety.org) have a lot of information on the benefits of TNR. On a local level, the Wisconsin Cat Project (www.facebook.com/wisconsincatproject) is seeking volunteers in all 19 Milwaukee County municipalities to help implement TNR. Contact them at email@example.com to get started.
- 360NOW: Wander Wawatosa's village
- Milwaukee Co. Zoo welcomes new female giraffe calf
- Video Tosa Top 5: Five things you need to know about in Wauwatosa
- Wauwatosa seeks volunteers for focus groups on city communication
- Area businesses collaborate to create the 'Cranky Sammie' in East Tosa
- District leaders question use of Wauwatosa schools as voting locations (9)
- Wauwatosa Senior Meals: May 2
- Moms get free admission to the zoo
- Pathways High alternative school pushes ahead despite adverse response from Wauwatosa schools
- Wauwatosa Police Report: April 17-23