City of Oshawa Animal Services are stepping up to help feral cats in their community
In November, 2017, the City of Oshawa endorsed a two-year pilot Trap-Neuter-Return-Manage program. As part of this program, on Feb. 11, 2018, the Ontario SPCA led a feral cat winter shelter building workshop at Oshawa Animal Services.
“We wanted to start by focusing on education,” says Kathy Pittman-Feltham, Supervisor, Animal Services, City of Oshawa.
Pittman-Feltham says the feral cat shelter build was an important step in educating the community about how the city’s TNRM program is going to serve the community.
“TNRM volunteers have been working tirelessly behind the scenes for many years helping the cat population in the City of Oshawa. Partnering with them is a way to show our support to a topic that’s shown to be of high importance to our residents,” she says.
The event was a great success, covering information on feral cats and colonies and instructing attendants on how to build winter cat shelters. There were 15 volunteers who attended, many of whom were already feral cat caretakers in the Oshawa area. In the course of the day the group built 30 shelters for cats in their community.
The city’s TNRM program will include advising council through feral cat colony visits, setting up a food bank to support cat caretakers, and providing more educational resources for caretakers in the community. The city already has a waitlist for their second shelter build, according to Pittman-Feltham.
Pittman-Feltham says the next step is to team up with Community Cats Toronto to provide feral cat caretaker training and certification for community members. She says partnering with the Ontario SPCA and organizations like Community Cats Toronto are crucial to the work they’re hoping to do in the community.
“Community partnerships and the tireless efforts of volunteers are priceless. We couldn’t do what we do without either of these,” she says.
The Ontario SPCA looks forward to continuing this relationship with Oshawa Animal Services in the future.
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