CONTACT: Kevin Hatman
PHONE: (248) 283-1000, ext. 150
khatman@michiganhumane.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 2, 2011

MICHIGAN HUMANE SOCIETY LAUNCHING FERAL CAT INITIATIVE
New program will reduce the number of homeless cats and provide much-needed care

DETROIT – The Michigan Humane Society (MHS), the state’s largest and oldest animal welfare organization, is launching a new program to reduce the number of homeless cats and provide feral cats with much-needed care. Utilizing a “Trap-Neuter-Return” (TNR) strategy, which has proven to be the most effective and humane way of handling feral cats, the program will allow MHS to provide low-cost sterilization for thousands of feral cats in the coming years.

“Every year, thousands of feral cats whose natural habitat is outdoors, away from people, are born here in the metro Detroit area,” said Robert Fisher, D.V.M., vice president of veterinary medicine at the Michigan Humane Society. “Because these animals are generally not able to be socialized and placed into adoptive homes, the most humane option is to ensure that they can live out their lives outdoors while not contributing to the massive pet overpopulation problem that exists in the state of Michigan.”

The new program will give individuals who wish to manage a feral cat colony near their home or place of employment with the chance to provide the animals with much-needed care. Caretakers will be trained on proper techniques and equipment to humanely trap feral cats and bring them to the Michigan Humane Society for sterilization and care. The animal will then be released back to their habitat.

For those interested in becoming a feral cat colony caretaker and participating in MHS’ low-cost feral cat TNR program, MHS is hosting a required workshop on Wednesday, May 11, at 6 p.m. at the Michigan Humane Society’s administrative office in Bingham Farms, located at 30300 Telegraph Road, Suite 220. Attendees can register online or get more information at www.michiganhumane.org or by phone at 1-866-MHUMANE.

Providing a TNR service to address the needs of feral cats is the last key principle of the no-kill philosophy for MHS to adopt. After achieving 100 percent adoption of healthy, adoptable animals and doubling the rate of treatable animals that found homes in 2010, MHS is well on its way to the goal of guaranteed placement of all adoptable and treatable animals within the next few years.

“This is an exciting time for the animals within our communities,” Fisher said. “With our new goal of guaranteed placement of all healthy and treatable animals firmly in sight and the launch of this program that will provide much-needed care to feral cats, MHS is proud to be a major contributor in creating truly healthy pet communities here in southeast Michigan.”

The Michigan Humane Society is a private, nonprofit organization which cares for more than 100,000 animals each year, while working to end companion animal homelessness, provide the highest quality service and compassion to the animals entrusted to our care, and to be a leader in promoting humane values.

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