Q & A
QUESTIONS ABOUT TNR
Can you relocate the feral cats(s) to a
barn or farm?
Feline Project (FFP) has NO farms,
barns, sanctuaries or other feral
colonies to relocate the feral cats to.
Our Trap Neuter and Return (TNR)
program is focused on returning them
back to their territory after they have
been spayed or neutered. It is extremely
difficult and usually unsuccessful to
try and relocate a feral to a new area.
Can you accept an outdoor/feral cat for
the adoption program?
semi-feral cats are not suitable for
anyone's adoption program. If you are
not sure if your outdoor cat is feral or
friendly, ask yourself the following
questions: Will it come up to you and
your family for attention? Can you pet
it, possibly pick it up and handle it?
Does it stay when you approach it? If
you are answering no, the cat is most
likely not adoptable. Semi-feral cats
sometimes become affectionate with their
feeders, but this does not mean they are
adoptable. They get used to you, but
only you, and will not do well in a
shelter situation or even inside. Feral
and semi-ferals should never be turned
over to animal control or admitted into
a kill or no-kill shelter. The risk of
them being euthanized, due to lack of
space and lack of adoptability is very high.
Why does it cost $75 per dollars per
cat? These are not my cats why should I
have to pay?
FFP is a
not for profit, all volunteer
rescue group. We use private vets who
perform the procedures at their cost and
we have to forward that cost on to you.
The majority of the donations we receive
are used to pay vet bills for sick and
injured kittens, special surgeries,
food, litter and medicine. There are
lower cost options in Chicago at
Tree House, Anti-Cruelty Society
and PAWS Chicago that you can
Can I spread the cost out in payments?
to your FFP representative for details.
When do I pay?
payment must be received before the
Can I pay by credit card?
can do so via pay pal at
Donations. We cannot process credit
cards out in the field. Cash and check
are also acceptable.
How are we going to be able to catch the
cats? They are wild and too smart to
go into a trap.
traps especially made for cats. They
have a door on each side, for easy
cleaning and holding of a feral cat.
Using the right bait and equipment can
catch the savviest feral cats.
How do I schedule a vet appointment?
appointment will be scheduled by your
FFP volunteer. An FFP volunteer is the
only person who can make you an
appointment. The cat will be turned
away without an appointment.
Where do I take the cat?
participating vet is located in
Wheeling. The location will be given to
you when our FFP volunteer meets you to
give you the traps.
What time do I drop off the cat and pick
is 8-10 AM and same day pick up is
What if I can't make these times?
have to make other arrangements with
family or friends to accommodate the
Can the vet keep the feral cat
What if I don't catch any cats or only 1
and I was supposed to bring 3 to the
vet? Contact your FFP
volunteer. Bring in what you did catch
for the appointment, even if its only 1,
we will reschedule at a later date for
What if I catch 2 cats in 1 trap?
in one trap, the vets will separate
them. Do not try to separate them
What if I catch wildlife?
trap upside down and the door will
automatically open allowing the wildlife
to escape. If you trap a skunk, tip the
trap over with a broom or something with
a long handle. NOTE: You should only
trap during daylight hours to avoid
trapping nocturnal wildlife.
AND PREGNANT FEMALES
What happens if the feral cat I am
feeding is pregnant?
If she is
pregnant and feral, the vet will not be
able to tell until she is sedated. It's
not safe for anyone, even our vets, to
handle a feral cat without sedation.
The sedation amount is calculated for
the mother cat and if pregnant, her
babies will peacefully go to sleep.
This is not painful for the kittens or
fatal for the mother cat. The mother
cat will be spayed and given extra
fluids and pain relief. It is advised,
during post operation, you can keep her
in the trap an extra day for recovery.
How old do the kittens need to be for
spaying or neutering?
must be 2 lbs or 8 weeks of age to be
spayed or neutered by our vet. Not all
vets can spay at 8 weeks due to their
lack of equipment. Our vet has the
equipment to perform these surgeries
safely. Kittens under 8 weeks of age
should be trapped and socialized so they
can be fixed and adopted out.
What age can FFP take my kittens for
prefers kittens no older then 7 weeks of
age for the adoption program (space
pending). We will take orphans of any
age up to 8 weeks. Once kittens are 8
weeks and older, they are still small
and cute, but very feral and extremely
hard to socialize. The best chance for
them to find a home is to get them
trapped while young. They do not have
to be weaned to be away from mom. We can
care for orphans needing bottle feeding.
Why won't FFP take feral kittens past 8
weeks of age for the adoption program?
take up to 8 weeks or more to socialize
kittens 8 weeks or older. There is no
guarantee they will ever be social
enough to be adopted. Space is precious
and due to the high demand, we are not
able to hold kittens this long. We focus
on rescuing younger kittens that can be
more easily tamed and adopted out.
Can you socialize a feral adult cat for
the adoption program?
practice is extremely unsafe even got
the most trained volunteers. All feral
cats/kittens over 8 weeks of age that we
receive will be spayed and returned to
their colony/territory. This is the
primary purpose of a successful TNR
Feral Cat Myths
"I think feral cats should be trapped and removed."
Trapping and removing cats from an area causes the "vacuum effect." As cats are removed, more cats move in for the food and shelter and quickly breed to repopulate the area.
"I think feral cats are diseased and live short, miserable lives. Euthanizing (killing) is the only way to ease their suffering."
This is UNTRUE! Feral cats do very well in a managed,
spay and neutered colony.
"Don't feral cats carry rabies?"
According to the Illinois Department of Public Health there have been no positive cases of rabies in cats since 1996. In 1996, one case was reported.
The Rabies vaccination is included in
the TNR package.
"I will take the feral cats to a local animal shelter or to a no-kill animal shelter to be adopted."
Feral cats are unsocialized, wild and cannot be adopted out as someone's pet. If taken to a shelter, even a no-kill shelter, these cats may be killed because they are unadoptable.
"I will call animal control or the local police department to have them trapped and removed."
Animal Control may kill the cats or take
to them to a shelter where they may be
killed. Unfortunately, domesticated cats
can be mistaken for feral cats and may
be euthanized. There is a very small
window with kittens where they can be
socialized and adoptable. If kittens are
past this window (over 8 weeks) and appear feral, they may be killed.
"I will trap them and
drop them off at a farm."
Trapping cats and dumping them on someone else's private property is unacceptable. Cats are very territorial and have close knit ties to their other colony cats. They don't do well if removed from their outdoor home (area). Additionally, when cats are removed from one area, other cats move in for the food and shelter. They breed prolifically to fill the void and will begin to repopulate the area.
"Feral cats are eating the birds and other wildlife."
According to the US Fish and Wildlife Service, the greatest threat to birds is the depletion of their habitat due to human development. Cats are predatory animals and help keep the the mouse and rat population down!
Keeping TNR'd feral cats on a good
feeding schedule will reduce this urge
to kill birds.