I have to tell you, Baxter Boo friends, that I am so impressed with the creative solutions that people are coming up with to improve the lives of stray and feral cats! As was covered before, the most humane and effective way of controlling cat populations is to use the Trap-Neuter-Return method as it prevents new litters and other new cats from moving into an established cat territory. Although cats have had a symbiotic relationship with humans with the onset of farming and grain storage for thousands of years, cats may not have the opportunity to find adequate shelter in modern urban areas or even in suburbia with all of those homeowner’s associations making people clear debris and old cars off properties.
Yet caring cat lovers are not deterred and see the plight of these vulnerable animals who would be ineligible for adoption into a home, yet are still providing a service in keeping rodent populations in check. In fact, I’ve recently become aware of architects in New York City who have united their love for form and function with their love for animals by designing outdoor cat shelters.
Even if you don’t feel like you have the skills of an architect, there are several sites on the web that give detailed instructions for assembling and building your own shelters. Visit Spay and Stay.org for simple outdoor cat homes made with nesting plastic totes and straw.
Tell us how you have or want to get involved in caring for your local cat colonies. Remember, a sign of a healthy community is how its members care for each other, including vulnerable animals. Therefore, consider including children in your care-taking endeavors to teach them skills for thoughtful living!