When stray and feral cats begin to breed unchecked, their numbers explode with appalling speed. And then the world is left with literally millions of homeless felines and not nearly enough people to care for them. And that includes “designer cats” like Siamese. But there is a way to help stop this from happening. That is with TNVR, or Trap/Neuter/Vaccinate/Return programs. Such as with the crusade that Cat Man Chris, commonly known as Chris Poole, battles each day. Sadly, it is not a quick fix. But there is no giving up. Not until the last feline is fixed or finds a forever home. No matter how long it takes.
So when he discovered a location FULL of Siamese cats and kittens, he spent over 8 months patiently waiting to trap each one!
And trap them he did.
It began in June of 2020 while Chris was feeding at another local mobile home park. One of the residents mentioned to him that her friend fed a colony of stray Siamese nearby. But the felines were not fixed and had been breeding like crazy, overwhelming the woman.
It’s an unusual spot too because on one side of the house is a big pond/road. Then on the other side, a big wilderness area. Which meant that after eating, the cats and kittens would disappear in the brush quickly. This is also a dangerous spot due to alligators and other wild animals that can prey on the cats and kittens.
Hearing “Siamese” always breaks the heart of animal rescuers because many times these “breeder” or “purebred” cats were abandoned. They may have served their “purpose” and were simply discarded. Even worse, when rescued from the streets, “designer cat” potential adopters apply in droves. So weeding out those who don’t have the cats best interest at heart is not an easy task.
The cats on “Siamese Street” as Chris began referring to it, were suffering though. And as he was able to coax them near him, he noticed they definitely needed medical attention. As with most stray and feral felines, they were fighting fleas and had goopy eyes from infections. Many of the first kittens caught had mange beginning to show on their tiny bodies. Later, in foster care, the dreaded ringworm made an appearance as well.
But none of this deterred Chris from his mission.
And while others may have given up or not had the time and resources to continue, Cat Man Chris refused to do so.
This was probably one of the toughest spots I’ve had to work. I know I spent well over 100 hours there, trying different methods/baits. I pulled out the regular traps, drop traps, catnip, early 5am starts, mid-mornings and nights.
The lady left for work early and fed them that early, so I had to stick to their routine. Then I discovered house a few doors down was feeding them too! Add in ducks and MASSIVE toads who were used to the food being left out, buffet style. So I’d have to chase them away from the traps which would in turn spook the cats and they wouldn’t come back…big nightmare!
The wily felines had access to a garage where Chris couldn’t reach them too. When he was given access, they would hang out under pallets just out of his reach.
But in November, he was finally able to use his long monkey arms (LOL) to snag 3 little Siamese cuties!
They were scared but off to a new life with one of his partner organizations, The Runaway’s Animal Rescue. Here, they settled into foster care and found wonderful new forever families!
Finally able to be carefree kittens, there are more adorable photos and videos of these three than can ever be shared here.
His mission wasn’t over yet though. There was still the PURRpetrator behind it all…mama cat. Because without catching and fixing her, the cycle of suffering would continue.
The property owner on Siamese street told me about one new kitten…argh. So I went over today fully expecting not to see them, or to see them run off. But fortunately mom and kitten were in one of the shelters! Mom quickly bolted, but the kitten stayed inside, so I put my net over the opening and grabbed her.
Then with the kitten in the carrier, I used her as bait to lure mom into the trap. WOOHOO!
Mama was truly feral and was TNR’d, but the sweet kitten was placed in foster care and adopted out.
He didn’t forget about the other cats at the location that weren’t Siamese though.
There were quite a few that had been fixed already; he could tell by their notches or tipped ears. So trying to trap ONLY unaltered cats also added to the difficulties. Once he succeeded, they were treated for any medical issues and either adopted out or returned to the location. Weatherproof shelters were made and distributed in the area as well for their comfort.
Chris trapped 5 more community cats at the location, fixing and releasing them all.
The other last female (black cat) was trapped by the daughter of the home owner a few doors down. I showed them how to use a trap and left them to it since the cats knew and trusted them.
Cats aren’t stupid and it was getting to the point where the cats would see/hear my car pull up and then disappear.
Now at least, there would be no more breeding and he moved on to the next needy cats. Please follow Cat Man Chris for all his rescue “tails” and to help with his crusade to save the cats of the world!