Show Host - Jon Patch

June Edition

Thanks to your support, we’ve been very busy this month protecting cats around the country. Here are just a few of our current projects and success stories:

eNews dotted line divider

Cat Cruelty Goes Viral Online and Nowhere in the Courts

The story of a Texas veterinarian depicted in a Facebook photo with a cat she claimed to have killed with a bow and arrow caused outrage. Calls for justice were heard across the US and beyond. However, the grim reality is that when it comes to enforcing animal cruelty laws, there is a shockingly low level of enforcement. Allowing animal cruelty to go unprosecuted is detrimental to society. Check out Becky Robinson’s Huffington Post blog to read more about the gap between Americans’ humane values and the lack of prosecution for crimes against animals.

eNews dotted line divider

Gainesville Reaches Milestone with TNR Workshop and Spay Day

eNews_Gainesville.jpg We have been working hard in Gainesville, Texas to implement and jumpstart humane, effective programs for cats supported by our grant funding. We’d like to share a new video which details how we’re partnering with local groups and Gainesville officials through a TNR workshop and a free Spay Day and vaccination clinic sponsored by Alley Cat Allies. After just a few months collaborating with Alley Cat Allies, Gainesville has officially adopted a TNR ordinance and is beginning to practice TNR. See how we’re following through on our promise to Gainesville’s cats.

eNews dotted line divider

Virginia Attorney General: Yes, TNR is Legal

Rest easy, Virginia—TNR is legal. The Virginia Office of the Attorney General clarified their 2013 opinion on TNR, emphasizing that private organizations are allowed to practice TNR under state law. The letter also retracts a November 2013 letter by the Opinions Counsel that falsely claimed private organizations couldn’t do TNR. That misinterpretation has been dismissed. Learn more about this important clarification for cats and their caregivers in Virginia, and keep the letter handy.

eNews dotted line divider

Alley Cat Allies Joins Loudoun Community Cat Coalition, Saves Over 100 Cats

As members of the Loudoun Community Cat Coalition, we were thrilled to assist with the coalition’s TNR clinic on May 17. Over 100 cats were neutered and vaccinated at the Leesburg Veterinary Hospital. We are proud to be on the committee with other outstanding groups, including Loudoun County Animal Services, Loudoun County Animal Control, Virginia Veterinary Medical Association, Towne Animal Clinic, the Humane Society of Loudoun County, Friends of Loudoun County Animal Shelter, Leesburg Veterinary Hospital, and CHASE. Thanks to all the volunteers, veterinary staff, advocates, and supporters who came out to help the cats! Check out the great photos of the event, and learn more about our partnership with this new coalition to save cats in Loudoun County.

eNews dotted line divider

Adoptable Cat: Meet Tony

Look at those cute floppy ears! Tony is a 10 year old tabby we found during a Trap-Neuter-Return event. At the time, he didn’t seem to feel too well. Turns out he is FIV+ and diabetic, so he needs extra care and love from a truly special person. Tony is doing great now and is ready for his forever home. He is sweet as pie, and your heart will melt when he looks at you with his big green eyes. And he never gets tired of head scratches. Be a hero for Tony—bring him home today!

eNews dotted line divider

The Atlantic City Boardwalk Cats are Ready for Summer and Need You!

Due to the hard work of our devoted volunteers, our Boardwalk Spring Cleaning went off without a hitch! Eighteen volunteers brought their high spirits and energy to tidy up the boardwalk, repair feeding stations, and refurbish the cat shelters. But caring for the Boardwalk Cats doesn’t end with spring cleaning—we need volunteers to help out all year. If you live in the Atlantic City area, sign up to volunteer today! You don’t need experience—you just need a love for cats and a desire to help. The Atlantic City Boardwalk Cats Project is a model program for the nation and shows that Trap-Neuter-Return works. Thanks so much to the volunteers and staff for providing this important service to the community and the cats!

eNews dotted line divider

Quick Links

Leaping Kitten

Four Cities in Two Weeks? We got this. This month we have Trap-Neuter-Return workshops scheduled in Oxon Hill, Maryland; Sedalia, Missouri; Houston, Texas; and Brenham, Texas. If you’re in any of these areas, RSVP and find out how you can protect cats in your community!

Boost Your Advocacy with a Kitten Care Kit! Young kittens require specialized care, but a Kitten Care Kit has all the tools you need. Check out how to make your own Kitten Care Kit, and share your knowledge with your friends and veterinarian!

For Immediate Release: October 7, 2014

BETHESDA, MD—The Cat Daddy himself, Jackson Galaxy, stars in Alley Cat Allies’ National Feral Cat Day®  (Oct. 16) Public Service Announcement (PSA) to help raise awareness of community cat care.

On his popular Animal Planet show “My Cat From Hell,” Galaxy works with cats of all kinds, and teaches cat owners how to provide an enriched environment for their furry family members. But Galaxy’s love for cats doesn’t stop there. 

The PSA shares the important message that outdoor cats deserve the same love and respect as the cats who share our homes.

“Whether you call them family cats, house cats, feral cats, community cats, alley cats…it doesn’t matter,” says Galaxy in the PSA. “They are our cats, our community cats, and they deserve our love and our protection.”

This year marks the 14th annual National Feral Cat Day®  and the theme—TNR: From the Alley…to Main Street—represents how far Trap-Neuter-Return has come. Starting in the alleyways with volunteers and rescue groups, TNR is now finding its way into shelters and animal control policies.

“Trap-Neuter-Return has become the mainstream way to care for community cats,” says Becky Robinson, president and founder of Alley Cat Allies. “If your local shelter isn’t doing TNR they are behind the times, and you should ask them to adopt the program. It saves lives and tax dollars.”

There are over 450 cities and counties with official ordinances or policies endorsing TNR and there are more than 600 nonprofit groups across the country practicing TNR.

Determined to change the state of cat care provided in our country’s animal sheltering system, Alley Cat Allies was the first to advocate for TNR for community cats in 1990. Since then a groundswell of support has arisen for community cats and their care. Learn more at www.alleycat.org.

The video is available at www.alleycat.org/FeralCatDayPSA

###

About Alley Cat Allies  Alley Cat Allies is the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats. Founded in 1990, today Alley Cat Allies has over half a million supporters and helps tens of thousands of individuals, communities, and organizations save and improve the lives of millions of cats and kittens nationwide.

Multiple state and local laws violated—national nonprofit offers help to establish humane programs

 

BETHESDA, MD – Alley Cat Allies, the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats, today called for city leaders in Bloomfield, Neb. to reevaluate their policies for cats after a police officer unlawfully shot and killed a trapped pet cat. City officials fail to enforce existing state and local laws regarding animals.

 

The case involves a Bloomfield police officer, who admitted that on January 21, he trapped Larry, a two-year-old neutered cat who belonged to a local resident, shot him immediately and dumped his body behind a city maintenance shed.

 

“The Officer openly admitted this series of events took place, and was given a mere written warning. In other words, a sworn law enforcement officer received a slap on the wrist for violating several laws—that is unconscionable,” said Becky Robinson, president and founder of Alley Cat Allies.

 

Local ordinances and state laws broken include Bloomfield ordinance § 6-112, which requires that captured and impounded dogs and cats should be “treated in a humane manner” and “kept and maintained at the pound for a period” of three to five days. According to local residents, this law is routinely violated, Robinson said.

 

Additional local and state laws broken by the Officer’s action:

 

  • Bloomfield ordinance § 6-106—states that owners of cats and dogs found outside “shall be notified in writing by the Police Department of their violation,” meaning Larry should have been impounded and the owners notified that he was at large.
  • Bloomfield ordinance § 6-107—authorizes the killing by officers of dogs and cats whose “capture is impossible.”  Because the Officer was able to trap Larry, clearly capture was not “impossible,” and the killing was not authorized.
  • Nebraska State Law R.R.S. Neb. § 28-1009, which states that “a person who cruelly mistreats an animal is guilty of a Class I misdemeanor for the first offense and a Class IV felony for any subsequent offense;” and defines cruel mistreatment as “knowingly and intentionally kill[ing], maim[ing], disfigure[ing],” and otherwise harming an animal.

 

“Laws that protect animals are on the books for a reason,” said Robinson.  “They reflect our values as a society—and it is crucial that they are upheld. The fact that a police officer could so blatantly ignore the law is very disturbing and should be a huge red flag for residents and city officials.”

 

Alley Cat Allies has reached out to town officials and asked for a meeting to develop proper policy and programs to ensure laws are followed—and to provide educational training for staff and police.

 

# # #

 

About Alley Cat Allies

Alley Cat Allies is the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats. Founded in 1990, today Alley Cat Allies has more than half a million supporters and helps tens of thousands of individuals, communities, and organizations save and improve the lives cats and kittens nationwide. Its website is www.alleycat.org.

Calls for constructive city policies that support community mediation and humane care for cats

 

BETHESDA, MD – Alley Cat Allies, the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats, today condemned the unnecessary and divisive actions of Pompano Beach Animal Control for issuing a citation to a 72-year-old woman for feeding feral cats.

 

Although the longtime caregiver demonstrated good intentions by obtaining permission from the property owner to feed the spayed and neutered cats, animal control cited her for violating an obscure city policy that makes feeding feral cats illegal.

 

“Issuing citations doesn’t solve anything—the cats will still make their home there. Policies like the one in Pompano Beach only punish Good Samaritans and pit neighbors against each other, instead of working towards a lasting approach,” said Becky Robinson, president and co-founder of Alley Cat Allies.

 

Robinson noted that Trap-Neuter-Return is the only humane and effective approach to feral cats in any community, because feral cats are not socialized to people, cannot be adopted into homes, and are almost always killed in animal pounds or shelters.

 

“Key elements in any successful program are community relations—which includes techniques like mediation—as well as spay/neuter,” said Robinson.

 

In condemning animal control’s actions, Alley Cat Allies is calling on the city to adopt a more constructive policy that encourages community relations over punitive measures like fines and citations.

 

“Communities all over the country are recognizing the inadequacy of outdated policies such as these, which benefit neither the cats, nor the community. If the law in Pompano Beach encourages animal control to punish citizens over fostering understanding and education, it is simply a bad policy,” said Robinson.

 

# # #

 

About Alley Cat Allies

Alley Cat Allies is the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats. Founded in 1990, today Alley Cat Allies has more than half a million supporters and helps tens of thousands of individuals, communities, and organizations save and improve the lives cats and kittens nationwide. Their website is www.alleycat.org.

Urges Commission not to waste tax dollars on failed method at Heber Springs

BETHESDA, MD— Alley Cat Allies, the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats, today condemned a plan by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission to trap and remove cats at Barnett Access in Heber Springs, Ark.

Last week, the Game and Fish Commission declined offers by Alley Cat Allies to coordinate a Trap-Neuter-Return program for the cats at no cost to the state.

Feral cats are not socialized to people and cannot be adopted into homes; they live outdoors in family groups called colonies. Trap-Neuter-Return is a humane method where feral cats are trapped and taken to a veterinarian to be neutered and vaccinated. After recovery, the cats are returned to their home—their colony—outdoors. No new litters are born, and socialized cats and kittens are removed from the grounds and adopted into good homes.

“There are humane options available to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission—options that will work for everyone, and have already worked for communities all over the country,” said Becky Robinson, president and co-founder of Alley Cat Allies. “We are disappointed that the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission has chosen a costly, ‘knee-jerk’ approach over a humane, proven, sustainable long-term solution.”

Alley Cat Allies condemned the use of taxpayer dollars to carry out the trap and remove effort, which it cautions will not be effective in permanently clearing the area of cats. The organization stated that trapping and removing cats, commonly practiced for decades, creates a void in the habitat where new, unneutered cats will move in and reproduce through a naturally occurring phenomenon known as the “vacuum effect.”

“It’s reprehensible and fiscally irresponsible that the Game and Fish Commission has chosen to waste tax dollars based on bad science,” said Robinson.

###

About Alley Cat Allies
Alley Cat Allies is the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats. Founded in 1990, today Alley Cat Allies has more than 260,000 supporters and helps tens of thousands of individuals, communities, and organizations save and improve the lives of millions of cats and kittens nationwide. Their web site is www.alleycat.org.