Below are some comments about this project and ways you can get involved:
I have been working diligently with a retired State Ranger on a project benefiting the North Collinwood community at the Euclid Beach Villa location and Wildwood State Park.
We have been trapping cats that live on the beach, under the arches, the pier, and at Wildwood State Marina. Those that are healthy are spayed or neutered, the feral cats are returned to the colony and the kittens and friendly adults go to the APL for adoption. The result is improved quality of life for the cat colony by controlling the exploding population and eliminating disease.
In the past eights months, we have trapped-neutered/spayed and returned (TNR) 17 feral cats, trapped eight friendly adult cats and 15 kittens and put them up for adoption. In total, we have affected over 79 lives.
Many of the cats living on the beach were old, sick and unable to survive the bitter cold Cleveland winters and were humanely euthanized. There are 38 healthy neutered/spayed cats currently living on the beach. They have warm housing and I feed them every day. I do all of this work at my own expense.
I have been fortunate to make contact with a group of concerned residents in the Collinwood area that are volunteering their time and money to manage several feral cat colonies. I have learned a lot, not only about managing a colony, but how to really help these cats as well as the community.
In neighborhoods throughout Cleveland, TNR programs have proven to be effective in humanely managing feral and stray cats, while at the same time reducing their numbers. With TNR, the cats are trapped, spayed or neutered, vaccinated for rabies, ear-tipped and, if they're feral, returned to their original territories. A trained caretaker then provides food and shelter, and watches for problems and newcomers.
After being sterilized and returned to their territory, feral cats no longer reproduce, so their numbers will diminish. There will be a reduction in noise – no more crying cats in heat and no more fighting.
The cats will roam less, making them less visible. There is less of chance for the spread of feline leukemia and, most importantly, there will be less suffering. All of this benefits the community.
My hope is that more people will become involved in our efforts. Whether or not you are an animal lover, we have a responsibility to each other and our community. Grants from PetSmart Charities and the City of Cleveland enable the APL to spay/neuter cats and kittens for only $10. If you are feeding a cat outside, please be part of the solution to overpopulation and call the APL for more information on
the TNR program (216-377-1624).
If you are not able to do the hands-on work, please consider making a tax-deductible donation to Northeast Shores Development Corp., 317 East 156th Street, Cleveland, OH 44110. Please write on the bottom of your check that the donation is for The North Collinwood Feral/Stray Cat Project.
Thank you for your consideration. Please feel free to call me if you would like more information about our work.