Introducing the Kitchen Colony

The KFC Colony lost their home. The junkyard they hung out in is cleared out, and no one feeds there anymore.


The good news is that eight adult cats from there were adopted into indoor homes, and the five kittens are still being fostered now by Joann.


The other good news is that Joann found a colony caregiver, Patrice, a few blocks away who has seen some of the remaining cats visiting her feeding station. IMG_3601

The feeding station is located behind a restaurant, off of a bank parking lot. So I called this the Kitchen Colony.


Patrice has been doing TNR at this site since 2004. She doesn’t keep track, but she thinks she has vetted almost 100 cats from here. A lot of the cats were friendly and she found homes for them, and found homes for their kittens. This is unfortunately one of those areas where a lot of people let their intact cats out.


I wasn’t surprised as that was also going on at the junkyard a few blocks away. The Joyce Division Colony is also a few blocks away, and most of those cats were friendly when I did TNR there starting in 2010. Patrice also knew about that colony. She said she had been begging Joyce for years for her to do TNR on the cats. She said Joyce would feed all of them and play with their kittens outside. Again, unfortunately, this is a pretty common scenario. Then she said that one day Joyce told her a woman came by and fixed all of the cats. Obviously that was me, and we couldn’t believe we were finally meeting each other years later. I had always asked Joyce if she ever knew anyone that feeds but she wouldn’t tell me about anyone else. It was so great to connect the dots and finally meet.


The restaurant and bank gave Patrice permission to feed and care for the cats here for years now. The restaurant especially likes the cats because they help keep the rats away. It’s a perfect scenario as they feed right behind their dumpsters, which normally would attract rats because of the food debris.


Patrice also set up shelters at this site under tarps. IMG_3406 IMG_3407

It was a great time to meet Patrice because she was worried about winterizing her shelters even more. I gave her a few new shelters to switch out with the old ones.


Joann and I immediately agreed to help her because the site is pretty overwhelming. Patrice already had three kittens from this site in foster care. There’s a mix of all kinds of cats here, and it’s pretty confusing. Some are already TNR’d. Some are not. Some are friendly. We spotted a pregnant female. There’s a sick black cat that we would like to trap for vetting. There are more kittens.


We set up traps several nights this month at the feeding station, and in people’s yards. IMG_3520 IMG_3540 IMG_3544

We even tried a drop trap one of those nights. Joann was there so often that the bank security guard told her he was going to have her car towed!


So far we have trapped three female cats and two kittens.


Ruby was first. She is the colony ambassador. She is friendly and all of the colony cats pick on her. She kept rubbing up against our legs. IMG_3412


Her ear was already tipped, but because she was not chipped, we have no idea who TNR’d her. Joann fully vetted her at Roscoe Village Animal Hospital for $390 and has been fostering her ever since in her home. She is FIV-/FeLV-. If you are interested in fostering or adopting Ruby, please contact me at [email protected]


Sally was also trapped the same day. She is the mother of the kittens that Patrice already had in foster care. Her TNR and FIV/FeLV test at PAWS Chicago was $41. She tested negative! IMG_3428

Joann tried fostering her indoors as well, because she follows Patrice all around outside.

Sally was miserable at her house, and acted feral. We returned her back outside. It is clear that she is just bonded to Patrice. It’s funny because Sally always spies on us from a safe distance. IMG_3599

But once Patrice is alone, she just follows her. Patrice texted us last night and said she couldn’t take it anymore and crated Sally in her garage. She is trying to see if she can acclimate her indoors.


We also trapped Birdie and her two kittens. Birdie went in one trap, and the two kittens went together in the other trap. Birdie is feral and was TNReturned. Her TNR package and FIV/FeLV test at PAWS was also $41 total and she also tested negative. IMG_3621

Patrice fully vetted and boarded Birdie’s two kittens for $420 at her vet, Family Pet Animal Hospital. Meet Clara and Darren. IMG_3602

My friend Elissa from Rockstar Pets agreed to socialize and foster them. It’s already working. IMG_0164

If you are interested in fostering or adopting Clara or Darren, you can also please contact me at [email protected]  They are FIV-/FeLV- and still need additional vetting.


In the meantime we will continue to TNR this colony!

cat lover says:

I enjoyed reading this wheras I also TNR and feed feral cats. I am in Los Angeles and love my feral cats….they are friendly and have become part of our lives! Thank you for caring for the cats!!!

Vanessa says:

Thanks for the kind words and for all that you do for the cats!

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Looking for Fosters for the KFC Colony Kittens

The five kittens from the KFC Colony were scheduled to be admitted into PAWS Chicago today.


Unfortunately that didn’t happen because PAWS was concerned about a bald spot on Tater, the black kitten’s nose. 12115665_10206820451203924_7031942464151994068_n They were concerned it was possibly from ringworm. Fingers crossed it isn’t actually ringworm. We think he rubbed it on the crate and created a bald spot. He was the one kitten who got out of his crate in my garage – go figure, he is the runt of the litter and still a troublemaker!


Their Wood’s lamp test for ringworm was negative, but the kittens were sent home to be fostered for an additional two weeks until their next appointment on Thursday, 11/5. In the meantime they had a culture test for ringworm. The results usually take about ten days.


Their previous amazing feline foster/socializer Robin T. could not take back these kittens for now because she now has out of town guests in her house.


Because of Robin, they are now totally socialized and oh-so-cute-and-ready-for-adoption! 12112157_10206820449883891_6020249842820366582_n

They are totally used to being in an indoor home, and even behave themselves during dinner. Except for Tigger, who thinks every plate is his. 12118903_10206820448763863_1315421792113306657_n

Please contact me at [email protected] if you are interested in these kittens. Thank you for all of your help!


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TNA: Trap, Neuter, Adopt for the KFC Colony

When we first started TNR for the KFC Colony in their junkyard home, we didn’t know what to expect. Little did we expect that almost ALL of the cats were going to end up in indoor homes because almost all of the adult cats were friendly, and the kittens were young enough to be socialized.


It was a good thing for the cats, because they lost their home in the middle of this project.


Joann saw cats and kittens through the fence on her first visit to the junkyard. There were tons of construction materials and garbage for them to hide in.

unnamed unnamed 2

People were also leaving food.



But we couldn’t figure out a way to get in. Everything was locked. She tried trapping in the neighbor’s yard and started leaving food as well.


One night a woman showed up to feed. We learned that her name is Corinne, and she has been feeding at this junkyard since last November. She drove almost every day from her home in Rogers Park to feed the cats. Another friend told her about it. Corinne fed all the time, and so did other people that randomly showed up with food, so when she tried to trap cats obviously it was pretty hard. They were not hungry enough to go in the traps. But she managed to trap about five or six cats, and almost all of them were friendly. She found homes for all of them within her network of friends, except for one cat that was feral, so he was TNReturned.


Corinne showed us how she got into the junkyard. There was a small gap in the chain link fence. She would trap a cat and then hoist it over the barbed wire. I have no idea how she did this by herself. IMG_3449

Corinne knew about the kittens, and knew who the mama cat was. She showed us photos of the cats she was still trying to trap. She said she had potential homes for all of them. She really was trying to do the best for the cats, but she was just overwhelmed at this point.

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That first day Joann and Corinne set traps together in the junkyard all five kittens were trapped. IMG_3339 They went into foster care with my friend Robin and will be admitted to PAWS Chicago tomorrow. Throughout their foster care their cost of vet care was $187.78 for eye meds and antibiotics.


The mama cat, Poppy, was also trapped that day. She was skin and bones and ravenous before and after her TNR. Her TNR clinic package cost $26, and testing cost $15. She tested negative for FIV and FeLV. IMG_3305 She was also friendly, and Corinne had very specific plans for her. She was adopted into an indoor home that had adopted her sister that Corinne trapped months before. Here she is being acclimated. IMG_3349

In the midst of this trapping, we met one of the contractors at the junkyard. He said we could do whatever we want. The junkyard was supposed to be cleared for a condo building, but it would be months before that happened.


Rusty was trapped next. His TNR clinic package and testing total was also $41, and he tested negative. IMG_3369

Corinne also had a specific home for him in mind as he was friendly and she had bonded to him outside and had lots of photos. unnamed

We trapped Diamond Jim next. Joann called me to help hoist him over the gap in the fence. IMG_3353

Diamond Jim’s TNR package was covered by this clinic so we just paid $20 for testing. Unfortunately he tested FIV+.


His paperwork also said he had a “superficial skin wound on his right rear leg (hock region).” The clinic gave him back to us and said he was acting “lazy” in the trap. DJ was definitely pretty lethargic, and also acting friendly, so we transferred him into the feral cat recovery lounge to test his temperament. After a few days we decided to bring him to Roscoe Village Animal Hospital to take a look. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

It turns out that his leg wound was infected and DJ had a temperature. He was weighed in at 11.2 pounds, which made a lot more sense than the weight listed as 7.5 pounds at the clinic. He was pretty heavy when we hoisted him over the fence! We treated him for everything at Roscoe Village. His total vet bill was $280. IMG_3463

After a week in the recovery lounge, Corinne was also able to place DJ into an indoor home!

That same week Joann showed up to trap and the junkyard was being cleared out. This was just days after we started, so obviously we did not have months to trap as had been explained to us. Trucks barreled into the yard and took away all of the materials. The kittens definitely would have been killed in the chaos. The workers agreed to watch the traps that Joann and Corinne had left, but when they came back that same night, the traps were also gone. We have no idea who took them.


This is what the junkyard looks like now.  IMG_3452

There were still a few cats that needed to be trapped here, but they dissipated now that the junkyard was cleared out.


We still don’t know what hapoened to the black cat in this photo, unnamed


or this siamese cat that was also a regular. IMG_0176


People stopped feeding. This all happened within the last few weeks. Total vetting costs from this colony was $569.78   and we lost $170 worth of equipment. Your donations make this possible! Thank you!


In the meantime, we found another feeding station a few blocks away where some of the missing cats, including the siamese, from this colony have been sighted. I call that colony the Kitchen Colony and I’ll be writing about that next.

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Kitten Costs

The kittens from the KFC Colony are adorable and doing well.


Whenever you are starting to TNR a new colony, usually kittens are involved. Vetting costs are almost always necessary and expensive when you are dealing with kittens.


When we first trapped and brought them inside, Tigger, the alpha male orange kitten’s eye looked like a problem. Joann brought him to her vet at Animal Medical Center. At the time we called him Mr. Orange because we were just trying to figure out which kitten was which, and their color was the easiest to distinguish them with. His eye was completely healed with the medication. The total cost was $116.78. Joann has insisted on paying all year out of pocket for any costs for the cats we are trying to help. Thank you, Joann! IMG_3461

Robin T. has been fostering these kittens ever since. This week, one of the tabby female kittens, Tabitha, started sneezing and then coughing. Today she had nasal discharge. Robin took Tabitha to her vet, who determined she most likely had a cold, and put her on oral antibiotics. Total cost was an additional $71, covered by your donations. Since the other kittens were already exposed, and still are not sick, we’re hoping that they are immune and will not also get sick.


Here’s Tabitha and her siblings listening to Robin’s daughter reading them a bed time story. This is one of the most precious photos I have ever seen. 12096405_10206753458329144_4432203286917100953_n In the meantime, PAWS Chicago has agreed to cover their vaccination and surgery costs, and will admit them into their program next week if they are all healthy and fully socialized. Doing TNR like this would not be possible without the help of fosters like Robin and people like Joann and local no-kill shelters like PAWS and donations from people like you. Thank you all!



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Introducing the KFC Colony: Kittens!

Joann answered a plea on about kittens born in a junkyard. The person who posted wanted to do the right thing, even though he is not partial to cats, and his wife is allergic.


Yup, there were kittens.  IMG_20150924_174841356_HDR

Five of them total, all different colors: tortie, black, orange, brown tabby, and torbie, not pictured. backyardcats

These kittens were eight weeks old at the most and already weaned: the prime age for being socialized and having a chance to get off the street.


This junkyard also happened to be a few blocks away from the Joyce Division Colony, and so it’s now added to the list of our targeted TNR area. It’s a city lot filled with construction materials for the cats to hide and find shelter in, which also makes it pretty dangerous should anything be moved.



Joann started trapping the kittens right away, and of course started seeing adult cats hanging around also. This colony is behind a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant, which is ironically the go-to bait for trappers to use for hard-to-trap cats. So, I named this new location the KFC Colony.


The kittens were trapped quickly and crated at my place. They were pretty suspicious at first, and huddled together. They looked healthy, and came around quickly whenever we brought them food.


Introducing, from left to right, Tori, Tilly, Tigger, Tabitha and Tater. IMG_3339

PAWS Chicago agreed to admit these kittens into their adoption program as long as they were socialized, and put them on their vaccination schedule right away. The entire process should take about a month. We are so grateful for their help with vet care and professional guidance.


Besides care, the kittens needed daily socialization. We networked looking for a foster, and my rescue friend, Chicago TNR, found one for us, Robin T. George from Chicago TNR is absolutely selfless when it comes to rescuing cats, and I am so thankful for her friendship.


Joann has done most of the work of this rescue, including transport. She sent me the cutest text on the way to Robin’s house. IMG_3357

Robin and her family welcomed these kittens with open arms, and the kittens have flourished under her care. We could not have done this without her, and I am happy to have a new friend in the world of animal rescue.


The kittens are learning how to eat like house cats, each getting their own plate of food. 11059780_10206738606517858_7200523987439298243_n

Playing. Obviously Tigger is the alpha male of the group. 12079050_10206738613598035_4840496342071354174_n

Still all cuddling together. 12079597_10206769759856672_7873601894885272180_n

But most importantly, they’re learning to love people. Robin’s daughter is reading a bedtime story here to Tilly and Tabitha, while Tigger investigates. 12096405_10206753458329144_4432203286917100953_n

They don’t want her to leave. 12108119_10206753465489323_3287355668263261024_n

All of the kittens had their first vet visit with PAWS, and are scheduled for admission soon. In the meantime, Tabitha started sneezing a bit, so another vet visit may be due soon. Robin is keeping a close eye on her and sent me this message, “She lets me manhandle her little kitten body, so I was able to listen to her lungs (I’m a PA) and her nose area is dry. She was purring too loud for me to hear anything! That’s assuming I could translate human medicine to cats, but my vet has the same stethoscope.” Seriously, how could you ask for a more perfect foster and scenario? She is amazing, and these kittens are on their way to their amazing new life outside of a junkyard.

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Englewood Outdoor Cats: Now Available for Adoption

Alicia is caring for a lot of outdoor cats in Englewood. Her home is now their home. The majority of the cats are friendly. This is not a colony, this is a place where people who cannot care for their cats, bring the cats and leave them there, or the cats are lucky enough to find her on their own.


She feeds and cares for them daily. She provides outdoor shelter for them, and also has a few fosters indoors. IMG_0498 IMG_0506 IMG_0526

I met Alicia a few weeks ago while volunteering with PAWS Chicago PAWS for Life Outreach Program. They have been helping her do TNR and have been able to admit some of her cats into their adoption program. Here are a few of the cats being returned to her that day, riding along in the PAWS van with us. IMG_0487 When we returned the cats outside, you could see how friendly some of them were immediately. IMG_0508

I knew who Alicia was before I met her because one of the cats from my own Humboldt Park neighborhood ended up on her Englewood block last year. Long story short, this cat was originally adopted out from Tree House, but I trapped him in my yard a few years ago because the owner always let him out. The microchip was then referenced to me. Somehow this cat ended up on Alicia’s block years later. She brought him into PAWS for treatment last December, and they traced his chip. Unfortunately the cat was euthanized because he was so sick. To this day we have no idea how this cat ended up from my neighborhood to hers.


Alicia wants the friendly cats on her block to have indoor homes. The majority are just too friendly to stay safe on the street. Every time we visit, several of the cats come up to us for pets. IMG_0904 IMG_0879 IMG_0899 I contacted my friends at Hyde Park Cats to see if they could help. This rescue group is amazing. They responded immediately, and visited Alicia last week. That same day, they took two cats into their foster-to-adoption program. In fact, the grey tabby cat in that last photo is one of the cats that is now in one of their foster’s homes. His name is Sweet. Check him out now indoors. 1669719_1068347679845262_76186469137248866_o

They also admitted this little black cat into their program. She loved being outdoors with her friends. IMG_0874

But she really loves being indoors. 10339729_1067826616564035_5977893035130401446_n

Please contact Hyde Park Cats if you are interested in adopting one of these cats, or donating to their cause. Alicia also needs additional fosters for her other friendly cats. Here are a few more.  IMG_0878

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sarah e lauzen says:

so wonderful! id love to come see some of them….

Vanessa says:

Hi Sarah, you can volunteer with PAWS Chicago PAWS for Life program here to see the cats in person.

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Recommending a Full Service Cat Sitter: Mama Bear Pet Care

Going out of town when you have multiple cats can be stressful. Not only are there pet cats to care for, sometimes with medical needs, but there can also be foster cats, sick feral cats resting in recovery lounge crates, and outdoor cat colonies.


Greer from Mama Bear Pet Care handles all of the above scenarios and then some. She cat sat for me a few times this year now. She has been a cat sitter for 20+ years, worked as a vet tech, and volunteers as a wildlife rehabilitator for Flint Creek Wildlife Center. She doesn’t just cat sit – she also cares for dogs and other pets.


In fact, she is currently pet sitting for a woman fostering a dog and her seven puppies for PAWS Chicago. Here’s Georgia and her one week old puppies. 10580719_507026606100650_7876362716078040356_o

Greer and I met last year when she adopted two former feral colony cats from me. Both of these cats ended up separately in animal control facilities. Their microchips were traced to me and saved their lives.


Louie is now the poster cat for her business. Louie is FIV+. So is his sister here that Greer adopted from Lulu’s Locker Rescue. 1890457_399810490155596_2111904987_o


Emrys is a bit more shy, but he is now also a total house cat. Emrys does not have FIV, and he mingles freely and safely with his cat friends. More and more progressive shelters are adopting this approach. 10365777_10152675473734610_1227857297545773598_n

See? Here they are together. They came from two different colonies with two different feeders a few blocks apart. I like to think they knew each other on the street and are reunited in Greer’s home. IMG_8319

When we were out of town last May I had Zombie Cat isolated and recovering in a feral cat recovery lounge. Here’s what the lounge looks like from the outside. It’s a crate with a Tru-Catch trap attached to it.


You could not touch her, but Zombie Cat was safely inside here and resting with a bed, litter box, food and water.


Zombie Cat is fully feral, and at the time, was in my house very sick with a URI, recovering from dental surgery, and required daily antibiotics. Greer took care of her and offered holistic suggestions from her own experience.


The cats in my yard also got her full attention. Greer kept their feeding stations clean and full of fresh food. While we were gone she gave me updates on their eating habits and who showed up for dinner.


She sent me photos. In fact, all of the photos in this post are taken by her.


Her photos made me smile because it obviously looked like business as usual and the cats barely noticed we were gone.


Bouncy Bear and Dice were still dining together. IMG_8335

Dash checked her out from the Jim Villa. IMG_8336 And Funny Face stayed back on the Feral Villa IMG_8333

Of course Greer didn’t forget my pet cats, Mooha and Mini. Mini is semi-feral and mostly bonded to me, but Mooha loved Greer.


I can’t say enough about Mama Bear Pet Care. Greer cares deeply about animals, and has devoted her life to caring for them in her home, in her work, and as a volunteer.







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Networking with Your Neighbors to Help the Outdoor Colony Cats

Relocation for feral cats is very difficult and should be used as a last resort. I’ve managed to avoid it in my area so far by networking with neighbors to find other people to feed the cats when a feeder is no longer able to do so. I’ve written about The Rockstar Colony before, a colony that lost their home, and a new feeder on the same block stepped up to care for them, providing food and shelter, and even adopted one of the cats.


The Eleanor Rigby Colony is another example, as they are on their THIRD home since 2009, also all on the same block. Their previous feeders died, but each time another neighbor stepped up to care for them. People care about the cats much more than you may think. You just have to talk to them and network.


Ingrid H contacted me two weeks ago from Everyblock for advice on finding another colony or another feeder for her TNR’d feral cat, named Veda. She’s been feeding this cat for almost a decade. I was very excited to hear from another person here who did TNR that long ago! I asked to share her story, and she kindly obliged, even providing me with photos.


Ingrid is moving at the end of this month to another state, and she knew she was the only person that fed Veda. She let Veda into her basement during the winter. Veda is pretty feral and not suited to be a full-time indoor cat, though, and Ingrid was worried about what would happen to her when she left. Ingrid initially thought that Veda would have to be relocated elsewhere.


This is Veda.

Veda, Logan Square cat

Veda initially came to Ingrid’s apartment building looking for food. Ingrid fed her, and before long Veda showed up with her kittens.


One of the kittens, Ratso, was adopted out by PAWS Chicago. Ratso, the logan square kitten

Ingrid ended up keeping two of the other kittens.


This is Malvina. Malvina, Logan Square colony And this is Andy. He’s still a scaredy cat that only allows Ingrid to pet him when she’s laying down next to him.

Andy, logan square colony

Obviously Ingrid is going to take these indoor cats with her to her new home, but she was worried about what was going to happen to Veda.


Once Ingrid started talking to her neighbors face to face, she found people willing to help. A neighbor across the street from her said that not only would she continue feeding Veda, she would do it in the same spot Veda was used to! No relocation necessary at all.


Ingrid also just bought a Feral Villa hoping that Veda will use that this winter. I suggested sprinkling some cat nip around it to entire her. Do you have any other suggestions? I love a happy ending.

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Trap-Neuter-Return, TNR, for Outdoor Cats in Englewood

I met up with Chicago TNR again over the winter to help with trap-neuter-return, TNR, for outdoor cats in Englewood, a neighborhood in Chicago’s south side. My friend George started Chicago TNR by herself last year and has been humanely trapping colony cats all over the south side. She started trapping the Englewood cats last November in partnership with PAWS Chicago’s low-cost spay/neuter clinic.

By mid-December, in just six weeks, Chicago TNR Trapped-Neutered-Returned 93 cats in Englewood. 32 additional cats were Trapped-Neutered-Relocated to farms and warehouses that contacted PAWS Chicago looking to help pull cats off the streets and also for rodent control.

I joined George again one day in December in Englewood, where we trapped eight of those cats in less than two hours, just by driving around. George typically drives the PAWS’ van loaded with Tru-Catch traps, pet carriers, cat food for donations and bait, and other items needed for TNR projects, including newspapers, paper plates, and sheets to cover the traps. PAWS van The cats are everywhere outside there, and we decided just to go to places where we knew there were community cats.

I met up with George at this TNR’d feral cat colony.

Englewood Colony

These cats are well fed and have shelter under the front porch. Englewood porch colony We moved on to an alley right around the corner where we saw a few cats, including this orange and white cat with a flea collar. We asked around but no one claimed him as theirs, so we decided to try to trap and take him to the clinic.

orange and white Englewood cat

He was suspicious but clearly hungry. So we set up a trap.

Englewood orange cat with trap

And got him a few minutes later.  orange cat in trap

We quickly moved on to another block where George knew of a colony and visited the feeder’s house. A well-endowed male cat was hanging out on her front steps. pet cat in Englewood

After a quick consultation with the feeder, who claimed him as one of her indoor/outdoor pet cats,  we got him into a carrier to be neutered as well.  orange Englewood pet cat in carrier

Around the corner from there we placed a Rubbermaid bin cat house for shelter. Rubbermaid bin cat house

It is well concealed from the street and you would hardly notice it, but hopefully it will help keep a few cats warm in the winter. cat house on porch

From there we moved even more quickly. The feeder told us about a few cats down the street, and we saw them right away. We placed two traps baited with tuna near another feeder’s front steps, and two cats obliged by going in them immediately. These cats were hungry. two traps near front steps in Englewood

The woman that was feeding them was moving out of the neighborhood that day and was very grateful for our help. She told us that there were other feeders on that block so these cats are cared for.

George and I decided to split up at that point and she drove to another spot while I continued TNR on this block.

A few doors down this long-haired beauty came running down the steps and out of the gate to greet me on the sidewalk.

Englewood gate

I talked to her feeder as well, who said she was friendly, but they could not let her permanently into their home.  She followed me down the block once she smelled the food.

Englewood sidewalk cat
She was easy to gently push into a trap. long-haired Englewood cat in trap
George came back at this point fairly quickly with two more cats in traps, and another pet cat in a carrier. So now we had eight cats. It was freezing outside and we decided to wrap it up.

She wanted to show me Sabrina’s Colony. This is a colony of over a dozen cats. Sabrina feeds diligently, and rescues friendly cats and kittens all the time on her own.

The cats are gorgeous and well fed. They all came running when they saw us. Sabrina's colony

This tabby cat appeared to be the ringleader.
tabby from Sabrina's colony

We were out of paper plates, but we fed them anyways on the ground.

These cats have ample shelters on her front porch.

Sabrina's cat shelters

From there we took all of the cats to PAWS Chicago’s low cost spay/neuter clinic. We met up with a few other feral cat trappers who were also dropping off their cats. We made sure each cat in a trap was fed.  Every trap was lined with clean newspaper for the cats to sit on, and each trap was covered with a sheet so that the feral cats would be calmed in the traps. Here they are ready for their spay/neuter surgeries, vaccinations, parasite treatments, and ear tipping. PAWS clinic

Once the cats are fully recovered from their surgeries, usually within 24 to 48 hours, George then returns the cats to where they were trapped. In this case, the pet cats were returned to their owners, and three of the cats in traps, including the long-haired beauty that ran to greet me, were relocated into companies requesting cats for rodent control in their warehouses, while also feeding and caring for them and providing shelter.

I look forward to helping George in this neighborhood again. There are too many intact cats running outside here and the residents welcome any help they can get.

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Hoping for a Positive Outcome for the Hoarder/Drug House this Holiday Season

My neighbor just spotted the Anti-Cruelty Society van again outside the hoarder/drug house of the indoor Stealers Wheel Colony. It sounds like they may be closer to getting all of the animals out of there. I will share the news if that happens. It’s been over a year since I was told about this house and tried to help, but I’m always hoping we are getting closer to a resolution.

This same neighbor has been reporting this house for years to the alderman because of the number of animals inside, the filthy condition it is in, and the fact that it appears there are drugs there as well. A few months ago she saw the “owners” of these cats giving away kittens outside. I once again called Anti-Cruelty Society, Chicago Animal Care and Control, and Cook County Animal and Rabies Control.

The last time I was inside it was hard to keep track of the cats. They swarmed the food. Stealers Wheel Colony feeding

They swarmed the new litter boxes we brought. Stealers Wheel new litterboxes This is what the original litter boxes looked like. So there was also feces all over the floor, even though the cats still tried to use the boxes.

I counted sixteen cats, two birds, and one chihuahua, but I also could not get into three of the rooms because the doorways were blocked. The cats could go in and out of them so it was possible there were even more cats hiding from me.

IMG01521-20121210-1244 Last year my neighbor Kim and I managed to TNReturn eight of the cats at Anti-Cruelty Society and using vouchers at PAWS Chicago’s low-cost vet clinics. Kim also ended up having to foster and adopt out two of the cats. Once these cats were out of that house you could see they were friendly and adoptable. DSC08382 We had to stop rescue efforts because the “owners” started arguing with us and the situation got dangerous. If nothing transpires soon, I’ll keep calling everywhere again. Once the animals are out then maybe someday the people there can also get the help they need.

In the meantime I’m hoping for a holiday miracle!

Hami says:

Can you give us an update about this hoarder case? Are you able to get all the cats out of that house now?

Vanessa says:

So far Anti-Cruelty Society has been able to remove nine cats from that house. Here is an update:

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