Does anyone else feed the feral black cats in the Village of Rio Grande

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  #1  
Old 01-20-2015, 04:49 PM
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Default Does anyone else feed the feral black cats in the Village of Rio Grande

Does anyone else feed the feral black cats in the Village of Rio Grande (near Lisbon)? There are three that I feed and have been for over a year. Last summer when I went home for a few months my housesitter fed them in my absence. This coming summer she is unable to feed them. I guess what I am looking for is someone to feed them while I am gone. Of course, I would supply all of their food. I know this is many months away, but I am so worried that I am their only source of food other than what they catch on their own. Please PM me if you are also feeding them or if you can help while I am away this summer. They are truly feral and cannot be rescued. Thank you.

Last edited by Kitty Litter; 01-21-2015 at 10:23 AM. Reason: delete post
  #2  
Old 01-21-2015, 12:27 AM
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What time of day do you feed them? Just curious, have they been trapped & fixed?
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  #3  
Old 01-21-2015, 07:24 AM
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I am curious as well.

Do you observe them while they are eating, or do you merely replenish a 'designated food station' on a daily basis?
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Old 01-21-2015, 07:57 AM
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I have a secluded Rubbermaid box where I put their food in the morning. They will appear at random times of the day to eat and then disappear for the day. They are just getting used to my kitties looking at them through the windows but they run off when they see me. I have not trapped them and had them fixed. I know this needs to be done. I had a bad experience last year trapping a cat so I don't look forward to doing this.
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Old 01-21-2015, 12:53 PM
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I am sure you are not looking for my personal opinion on feeding or not feeding feral cats.
I offer food for thought:



"Many people who encounter feral cats start feeding them, but feeding alone can actually make the situation worse. Feeding ferals increases their ability to give birth to even more kittens who are destined to suffer and die premature deaths. It is essential to get these cats off the streets in order to prevent not only their own suffering, but that of their offspring. Feeding should ONLY be done as a prelude to trapping, to get cats accustomed to eating in a certain place at a certain time."




In addition:
Your practice may be inadvertently attracting rodents.

Sorry.
  #6  
Old 01-21-2015, 01:12 PM
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Kittylitter, I can't help you with the feeding because we live too far away, but have you ever contacted lovinganimals on this site about trapping? She has traps and a lot of experience with TNR (trap, neuter, release).

Taking ferals off the street creates a vacuum that other ferals will fill. TNR is the best solution, in my opinion. I'd hate to control the population through starvation or trapping them to have them destroyed. I don't know why ferals are looked at differently than, say, coyotes or bobcats. They're all wild animals. but I know others feel differently.
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Old 01-21-2015, 03:14 PM
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Seems to me I have read statements concerning the feeding of wild animals here in both The Villages and the State of Florida! It's actually against the law!!!
  #8  
Old 01-21-2015, 04:45 PM
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This from the PETA website:



"Because of the huge number of feral cats and the severe shortage of good homes, the difficulty of socialization, and the dangers lurking where most feral cats live, it may be necessary and the most compassionate choice to euthanize feral cats. You can ask your veterinarian to do this or, if your local shelter uses an injection of sodium pentobarbital, take the cats there. Please do not allow the prospect of euthanasia to deter you from trapping cats. If you leave them where they are, they will almost certainly die a painful death. A painless injection is far kinder than any fate that feral cats will meet if left to survive on their own."
------------

Feral cats are not natural inhabitants in our nature areas and by their numbers DO upset the ecological balance.

I respectfully do not understand what it means to say, "taking them off the streets creates a vacuum that other ferals will fill".

Feral cats kill millions of birds and small mammals a year in the U.S.- including some of our endangered species.

I am aware of the law against feeding animals that are wild- and that it carries a heavy fine.
I do not know if feral cats are specifically included on the list of those animals not to be fed, but one must still consider that outdoor food stations will attract rats and various other critters as well.
  #9  
Old 01-21-2015, 06:49 PM
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Kitty Littter, Of course I will help you trap and fix them. You have helped me in many ways. And Uptown Girl, Cfrance is correct. When you remove cats from an area, other cats move in and the pattern repeats. Cats are territorial so when cats are removed, others claim the area. Its the "Vacuum effect". Many cats live long lives when TNR'd. As long as they are continued to be fed it is fine. However, I do not agree with feeding them for an extended period of time and then stopping. Kitty litter is doing the right thing by having plans to have someone else feed while she is away. That is the moral and right thing to do. There are many who feed while it is convenient and then stop. That is not right. As far as what was quoted from PETA, I am surprised to read that. There are many organizations that encourage TNR, like Ally Cat Allies and Best Friend's Animal Sanctuary in Utah (look them up, great work they do!). There are unlimited numbers of wild animals out there that survive. Ferals have a right to live also and as long as we try to control the population and help them, why not let them live? Not every cat is going to suffer, just like not every squirrel gets hit by a car, and not every deer gets hunted. Some ferals have a wonderful life- especially with our help.
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Old 01-21-2015, 07:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovinganimals View Post
Kitty Littter, Of course I will help you trap and fix them. You have helped me in many ways. And Uptown Girl, Cfrance is correct. When you remove cats from an area, other cats move in and the pattern repeats. Cats are territorial so when cats are removed, others claim the area. Its the "Vacuum effect". Many cats live long lives when TNR'd. As long as they are continued to be fed it is fine. However, I do not agree with feeding them for an extended period of time and then stopping. Kitty litter is doing the right thing by having plans to have someone else feed while she is away. That is the moral and right thing to do. There are many who feed while it is convenient and then stop. That is not right. As far as what was quoted from PETA, I am surprised to read that. There are many organizations that encourage TNR, like Ally Cat Allies and Best Friend's Animal Sanctuary in Utah (look them up, great work they do!). There are unlimited numbers of wild animals out there that survive. Ferals have a right to live also and as long as we try to control the population and help them, why not let them live? Not every cat is going to suffer, just like not every squirrel gets hit by a car, and not every deer gets hunted. Some ferals have a wonderful life- especially with our help.
You are such a sensible, loving woman.
I admire you so much. You really are an inspiration.
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  #11  
Old 01-21-2015, 11:01 PM
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Thank you Lovinganimals. I knew you would post a reply to Uptown Girl. I can't believe that she feels that all feral cats should be euthanized. I will be in touch with you regarding trapping these cats. You truly have a heart of gold.
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Old 01-22-2015, 02:38 AM
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Unfortunately, I, too, live too far south to be of any help in feeding these stray kitties. I do not believe that they should be euthanized unless there is a real reason for doing so, i.e., illness, disease, or something tragic.

I am, however, 100% in favor of trapping, neutering and release to the same place they were trapped. Stray/feral cats must be neutered. Otherwise after a few years, the area will be inundated with cats. It is not a good practice to feed them and not neuter them.

Just as a point of information, a cat's gestation period is about 63 days. They go back into heat when the kittens are a few weeks old and will produce a few litters a year. Do the math!
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  #13  
Old 01-22-2015, 07:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kitty Litter View Post
Thank you Lovinganimals. I knew you would post a reply to Uptown Girl. I can't believe that she feels that all feral cats should be euthanized. I will be in touch with you regarding trapping these cats. You truly have a heart of gold.
I did not say I believe all feral cats should be euthanized. I quoted from PETA.

My decision to post what I did was to offer a clear (and broader) perspective; that is, offer PETA's view of the ripple effects and the inherent responsibility incurred when providing a regular fresh food station in a 'natural' area.

In your compassion, you have been feeding these cats for OVER A YEAR, perhaps without knowledge of that broader perspective.


Setting heartfelt sympathies aside, I see PETA's perspective on feeding the cats.

I also see the broad perspective of leaving food out in the open.

Last edited by Uptown Girl; 01-22-2015 at 01:02 PM.
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Old 01-22-2015, 09:36 AM
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Here in TV, we all live in such close proximity to our neighbors. Are these cats being fed near homes? If so, is the potential effect on neighbors' property being taken into consideration?

(My question is not intended to offend or to start a debate. It is just something I wonder about whenever I read these posts about feeding feral cats. I hope to get an answer. That's all. In fact, I tried to talk myself out of even asking. But curiosity got the best of me.)
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Old 01-22-2015, 10:35 AM
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I would not feed feral cats (while being very familiar with them as I grew in the country with them all around) for the same reason I would not feed any wildlife: they can become dependent on you, and when you can't do it, then what?

Always go the state fish, game and wildlife commissions' advice and education. Here is just one nugget section of many on the FL Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission site and white paper linked below. All of it should be read by everybody:
Domestic cats can have impacts on native wildlife:

Domestic cats are not a part of natural ecosystem. A single individual free-ranging cat may kill 100 or more birds and mammals per year. Scientists in Wisconsin estimate that cats kill at least 7.8 million birds per year in that state alone. Even cats with bells on their collars kill birds and small mammals.

Cats compete with native predators and spread disease.

Domestic cats can be a nuisance and cause damage in many of the same ways that wild animals do, such as killing poultry and other small domestic stock.

Homeless cats may compete with pets for food.

Free-ranging cats can kill birds at bird feeders.

Cats can be a nuisance in gardens when they defecate and cover their feces by digging.

Modify your actions to begin solving the cat problem.

Do not feed cats other than your own. Do what you can to eliminate cat's artificial food sources. Bring in pet food at night and secure trash cans by fastening the lid tightly or enclosing in a bin with a locking lid……

Cats: Free Ranging and Feral

http://myfwc.com/media/1348637/Domes...whitepaper.pdf


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