Thursday, June 26, 2008

Trapping Strategies - Let's Learn about Drop Traps

Regular humane metal box-style traps work in most situations, particularly when used with the proper planning and strategies. If you need tips on using the standard box-style traps more effectively for certain cats, email and we can brainstorm with you. Regular box-style traps are available for rent from both Tree House Humane Society and Paws Chicago.

Drop Traps:
A drop trap is a special kind of humane trap. Right now our drop trap is on loan to someone. Ours looks similar to the one in the video, and is non-folding. It was graciously built for us recently by Brian. Thank you Brian! Below the video are links to instructions in case you want to build your own. If you have one that you can loan out to others, please let us know. Watch a special video on a drop trap here.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Three Friendly Cats Need Help
Watch the video!

If you can help please email
UPDATE: As of a few hours ago, Tree House Humane Society will admit ALL THREE CATS! Watch the original video, made before we knew who would take them, to see these famous sweeties that will be ready for adoption soon! We will post updates on them here so stay tuned!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

King Trapping Sunday June 8th a Sucess
and we beat the rain!

TEN cats! We trapped ten cats from four different locations. We labeled the traps and took notes very carefully so the ones we return after their surgery and recovery will go right back to their respective outdoor territories. As of this writing they have all eaten, and now are resting before their trip to the clinic early tomorrow morning.

THREE of them are friendly! This took us a little by surprise to get so many at once. It is a close tie for who is the friendliest, but the two most friendly even in the trap a few hours after trapping are a calico we named Butterscotch and a white and black cat we named Honey Pot. Both of them nudged up against the chopstick we were using to pet them through the trap, and Honey Pot was so at ease around us she even started a cat nap as we were looking at her. Butterscotch's calico sister was also trapped and we named her "Buttercup." She could be just as friendly, when she hasn't been trapped a few hours previously. We'll check her again in the morning.

So we need foster home volunteers! This can be relatively short term, but you would need to come forward fast, as we need to know or we may have to release one of the friendly ones after the surgery and recovery and we would rather not do that. We are looking to place into foster homes Butterscotch, Buttercup (possibly with her fellow calico and sister Butterscotch), Honey Pot, and Amber. Why would we need foster homes? It is not easy to place a cat into a no-kill shelter, as we all know. Particularly at this time of year no-kill shelters are very full. This is the whole reason TNR and spay and neuter is so critical. Even a TNR project led by a shelter faces the same shelter capacity issue. We will do admission requests for these cats at Tree House but also at other no-kill shelters as necessary. We may adopt out directly instead of through a shelter. We will do this only if we have to, as we cannot offer the same lifetime return guarantee if we do it that way.

Honey Pot was living in a parking lot, and in the outdoors Honey Pot was a little swatty with the other cats. She may mellow out in relation to other cats after her spay and recovery, with a stable food source and the indoor environment she definitely once had. Butterscotch and Buttercup apparently are part of a group of four cats whose owner passed away and the people just put the cats out. A resident has let them take up residence in her back yard and provided food and outdoor shelter. We feel all of the four could go into separate foster homes, or some combinations may be possible.

Also trapped that will be released after surgery, vaccination, and recovery are Jasmine, Yasmine, Spot, Amber, Earl, Shadow, and Blue-Eye.

Thank you to everyone who has donated so far! We will be spending some of that money already tomorrow Monday morning at the clinic. You are making a big difference in the life of one cat, and preventing a lot of senseless suffering and euthanasia that comes from endless breeding. If you want, keep donating! Hopefully more TNR volunteers will step forward, whether or not they have prior experience, and we will already have the money to get them started!

Stay tuned for photos in the next few days! Thanks to Vanessa, Ms. King, Curtis and Meghan for participating today with myself, Janet. A special thank you to Vanessa who is making an enormous contribution in offering recovery space and transport assistance. On Thursday Vanessa and I will trap again. If you 'd like to help trap, drive, or foster please let us know.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

King TNR Project
Trap Rehearsal a huge success!

Huge is definitely the word - for the number of cats we saw this morning! We saw 22 cats this morning in six different nearby locations. Most did go and eat all the way in the back of the trap, which helps guarantee trapping on our King trapping days, tomorrow Sunday 6/8/08 and Thursday 6/12/08. Even one male we trapped, neutered, and released in February 2008 went into the trap and had himself a big meal today. He didn't have to though. We would have fed him after the rehearsal. Here is a photo of the trap rehearsal we did back in February. The only difference between that one and today is about 70 degrees in temperature! Last February it was freezing and today was much more pleasant, but pretty hot and humid.

We had a photographer with us for a while from a major Chicago newspaper because they will be doing a 150 word article soon which will include some info on this trapping!

Of the 22 cats that we saw today, only four were eartipped and spayed/neutered. They were the ones we did in February 2008. They are all doing very well, which just goes to show that a TNR'd cat will forgive and forget as long as you keep feeding. The fifth we spayed in February 2008 has her own famous happy story. Watch for the post about Laila, formerly SissyBoots, who we will feature on this blog.

So stay tuned for more trapping news, and wish us luck tomorrow!