TNR With a Microchip Saves Lives Twice

Last night we picked up a colony cat from Chicago Animal Care and Control. She is a TNR’d colony cat microchipped to my friend Heather W, who has done a lot of TNR south of my area.


Heather got the call from Tree House on January 6th that her colony cat, Mama Skipper, was at CACC. 10897819_850070471703450_317307613041413929_n

Heather TNR’d Mama Skipper a few years. She also trapped her kittens at the time, which were admitted to Tree House. Mama cats outside don’t do very well – they spend all of their time and energy being pregnant and caring for the kittens. Usually mama cats always look the most disheveled and skinny in the colonies. TNR stops the breeding cycle and the cats flourish. You can see that Skipper looks pretty scared here in CACC, but healthy.


Someone in Heather’s neighborhood called CACC about cats. An Animal Control Officer – ACO, came out and ended up trapping Mama Skipper on January 4th. She’s pretty visible because she likes to hang out on people’s porches.


ACO’s are not supposed to trap ear tipped cats, but it is being done at times. Per the paperwork, there looked like there was some confusion as to whether they thought she was ear tipped, or had frostbite.


We were kind of confused at first also. It looks like both of her ears were tipped.


This is her left ear, which is always the ear that is tipped for identification that the cat was TNR’d. IMG_9724 And this is her right ear, which looks damaged from first bite, probably from last winter because it was healed. IMG_9725 Here’s the view of her ears from the top. Her damaged right ear looks even smaller than her tipped left ear. IMG_9728

The pick-up at CACC went very smoothly. Tree House had put a hold on the cat, and we showed up with a trap. The ACO went in back and got Skipper for us. There were a few people there looking to adopt, which was great to see. But the adoption room only had three cats. Later we learned from the CACC Cat Transfer Team that the facility currently only has 12 cats. Normally CACC is overloaded, but it is freezing outside, so perhaps less cats are coming in.


The weather is definitely concerning this week. We are at below freezing temps, and there was a quite a bit of snow since Mama Skipper was picked up. Our friend Melissa agreed to keep Mama in her bathroom for a few days and let her rest. She definitely has a thick feral fur coat to brave the cold, and Heather has an outdoor cat shelter for her outside, but she wanted to also make sure Mama did not catch an upper respiratory infection – URI, which is common at CACC.


Also, Mama is showing to be somewhat friendly, which makes sense since she was picked up. She was so calm, from CACC, to the trap, to Melissa’s bathroom. Perhaps the neighbor that called thought she was a lost pet. Who knows? We are trying to find out which neighbor called. In the meantime, please let us know if you’re interested in fostering her to see if she belongs indoors.

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