Today I went to an open house for animal rescue groups at Chicago Animal Care and Control. It was a chance for all the groups to meet while discussing their plans moving forward to reducing the number of animals killed in shelters in Chicago.
All areas of rescue, from foster organizations to adoptions to shelters to trap-neuter-return to cat colony caretakers, were given credit in helping the overall kill rates to decrease. Rochelle Michalek, PAWS Chicago’s executive director, explained the statistics in how their shelter is helping to get the number of animals saved to increase every year.
One number she cited struck me the most. Twenty thousand.
Twenty thousand stray and feral cats have been TNR’ed since 2008, at the start of the Managed Care of Feral Cats Ordinance making TNR Cook County’s preferred method of controlling our stray and feral cat overpopulation. 20,000 is the combined number of cats TNR’d as reported by the ordinance’s sponsor organizations: Feral Fixers, PAWS Chicago, Tree House, and Triple R Pets.
How’s that for Cat Math? That number is HUGE. It shows that A LOT of people are out there doing TNR because they know it’s the most humane and effective method of controlling the outdoor cat overpopulation.
Then Dr. Richard Brown, CACC’s new supervising veterinarian, threw out some more numbers. He wants CACC to reduce their kill rate another 10% this year. And then he wants CACC, an intake shelter, to be no-kill by 2015.
I am inspired. I met a lot of great people today who care greatly.
And I won the gift box from the Open House’s raffle! I didn’t even put my name in the hat – Erin from Lulu’s Locker Rescue threw it in there without me knowing about it. It’s filled with dog treats, cat toys and other very important supplies for feral cat colony caretakers such was wine, beer, chocolate, cookies and candy.
I’m sharing the treats with some of my community’s feral cat caretakers. And Mooha.