Marshfield Area Pet Shelter adopts TNR program

Strawberry is a kitten at the Marshfield Area Pet Shelter.
Strawberry is a kitten at the Marshfield Area Pet Shelter.(WSAW)
Updated: Jun. 14, 2021 at 5:18 PM CDT
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MARSHFIELD, Wis. (WSAW) - Marshfield Area Pet Shelter recently adopted a new program called trap-neuter-release (TNR) to help reduce the amount of feral cats in its community.

Through this program, feral cats will be trapped, spayed or neutered, and released back to where they came from.

While the cats are undergoing surgery, the vets also check them for other health issues, like fleas and abscesses. They will also get basic vaccines, like a rabies and distemper shot.

“The research all shows that cats are healthier after they’ve been trapped, neutered and returned,” shelter manager Kaitlin Loberg said.

“Cats that go through the TNR program don’t have to be confined two weeks after surgery because it is very stressful for them to be confined. It’s actually safer for them to go back to their homes and recover where they are comfortable,” Loberg said.

But, some of the kittens or cats that come through the shelter may need a little more attention than just a spay or neuter. One of the shelter’s kittens, Nugget, came in to the shelter with an upper respiratory infection which affected his eyes, Loberg said. “He didn’t really want to eat or drink or get up and move at all, but now he is a very happy and playful boy after lots of supportive care.”

The shelter is relying on grants from larger organizations and a low cost spay and neuter clinic that specializes in TNR.

Loberg said the most important step is finding out how many cats are within a colony. The public can help by putting food down for 30 minutes and watching to see how many cats come by each day. The public, then can call the organization at 715-486-5140 or use email to tell the shelter about how many have been seen in the area.

Once the shelter has an idea of how many cats are in the area, they will then set traps so they can be spayed or neutered. During the surgery, cats are also given an ear tip where the very tip of their ear is removed so people can identify that the cat is a feral cat and does not belong to anyone so they aren’t trapped again.

July 1st is when this program officially starts. That means any feral cat that comes into the shelter will be get fixed and then released back to the area they were taken from.

Anyone interested in more information or resources from the shelter can visit its website here.

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