Erie County's humane society eyes feral cats

Erie County's humane society is launching a series of programs to deal with the area's feral cat problem, said Barbara Hargreaves, the group's director.
Tom Jackson
Nov 4, 2012

The humane society once ran a trap, neuter and return program to reduce the wild cat population in the county, but it ended in December 2011 when the program ran out of money, Hargreaves said.

But with the feral cat problem persisting, the group is launching a three-pronged effort to tackle the issue, said Hargreaves, the director for about 18 months.

For starters, a modest do-it-yourself program currently allows local residents to borrow a trap to collect the cats themselves.

“There are several vets who do feral cat surgeries in the area,” Hargreaves said.

The cost runs about $45 to $60.

Residents who want to borrow a cage must make an appointment with the vet first, she said.

Second, the Humane Society has submitted a proposal to the Kenneth A. Scott Foundation of Cleveland for a $25,000 grant to hire someone for 20 hours a week to run a new trap, neuter and release program.

The program will cover part of the costs for surgeries, although residents using the service would be expected to pay something, Hargreaves said.

“It’s going to be a 'hand-up,'" she said. "It’s not going to be a handout."

The group’s executive director, H. Richard Obermanns, was scheduled to visit the humane society Thursday to perform an on-site inspection, so it appears the grant request is being taken seriously, Hargreaves said.

An announcement is expected by year’s end.

The Scott Charitable Trust, which promotes humane treatment of animals, began in 1995. A Form 990 filed with the IRS this year shows the trust had net income of about $996,000 in 2011 from investment assets of about $19.3 million.

It paid about $863,000 in grants to various animal protection groups, including animal shelters in Ohio that received money for feral cat programs.

A third program aims to set up a surgery center, for feral cats, at property Erie County's humane society owns at 1915 Superior St., next to the humane society building.

“I’d like to see it done in 2013,” Hargreaves said.

The site is currently occupied by a vacant house, but it's being demolished. Sandusky firefighters will burn it as part of a training exercise over the next few days.

Brett Kromer, of GreensMe, has agreed to deal with the resulting debris, including filling in the basement.

Hargreaves said the humane society will soon concentrate on obtaining grant money to build the surgery center. Naming rights are available for any donor who would care to step forward.

Comments

pptrsha

a few years ago we had a huge number of cats being dropped off in front of our house!! we took them in fed them handled them and gave them away to new homes. i am not exaggerating when i saw it was close to 80 cats and kittens. we had a free kitten ad in the paper for a whole summer we were buying 50 lbs of cat food a month and we never saw another mouse! there is a field behind our house! somewhere along the way one of the cats had cat scratch disease and made my granddaughter sick the hospital said they are seeing a lot of cases of this now it used to be common in big places like texas not so much in ohio. until now. we have remodeled houses all over this town and because there is a body of water close by RATS AND MICE ARE EVERYWHERE

Licorice Schtick

You need coyotes.

BEHAPPY

Sick macho man

Licorice Schtick

Coyotes will take care of mice, rats, cats, rabbits, chickens...

BEHAPPY

Sick macho man

luvblues2

One good shot equals a dead cat. Dead cats don't get hungry nor do they feel pain.

BEHAPPY

Sick macho man who I will turn in if I ever found out who you are

luvblues2

Turn me in for what?

BEHAPPY

All BIG men~Go pick on someone your own size big boys

BEHAPPY

That's real men helping animals

queenjhb

Behappy, I showed that photo to all my co-workers,[smile] they all had the same response"ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh"

queenjhb

ladydye-5-your neighbors sound horrible, please report them ,maybe they can be educated on the harm they are createing for these cats and kittens.You have a right to a safe, clean yard, its not the cats fault, its there owners fault. Get neighbors to sign a petition, and submit it to these neighbors, telling them you are all aware of all those cats and would love to help the neighbors w/ the problem. Helping them by coming together w/ a helping hand and support for a working solution. Everyone needs help sometime.If they dont have a positive response,report them for animal abuse, it is after all ,neglect.

WaterStreetCooncat

We're smart enough to know you don't like us...that's why we pee in your garden. We don't kill our own like you do either. You say, "I'm not much of a cat person", well I'm not much of a person cat.

BEHAPPY

LOVE IT ; )

BEHAPPY

Seems they just don't like CASSIDY~seems ok for the people to stay here that say absolutely HORRIFIC, AWFUL things they do to cats or what they would do. Sad

LadyC

I think the program sounds like a good idea. It sounds like it could use a little more consideration, such as, are the cats returning to the neighborhood they were caught in? Where are they released? High traffic areas would be dangerous, and with nasty people like some of those on here, intolerant of the animals, their neighborhoods don't sound like great places either. I don't know why cats bother anyone, personally. They are reasonably independent, keep the mice away, and are pretty and pleasant animals. Too bad there aren't a few Back to the Wild type cat sanctuaries, where they could run in a less hostile and concrete environment. People really need to have a heart. Cat hoarding is disturbing and unsanitary, but I think some of the reason people have gone that far is because they want to save all the strays, and are afraid of all the nasty people hating on the poor creatures. And to those who are so bothered, I hope a bird craps all over your car, mice overrun your house, and squirrels dig up your yard. It's their city too!

queenjhb

LadyC A cat sanctuary is a wonderful idea, there has to be some successful examples out there. I like the way you think.

LadyC

I looked online at some of the existing cat sanctuaries. Some of them are really nice! Most of them are in New York, one in California. The problem in this area would of course be funding, it seems the county applies limited funds when it comes to animal rescue, etc. I don't know where they got the property, it may have been donated. But it would be great if there were a farm or large lot on the outskirts of town. The animals aren't caged, and they have special areas for the ones recovering from sickness (no kill, and one had a cemetary. It made me wish I had the $$$ to start one.

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