National Feral Cat Day, Oct. 16, was established by stray and feral cat advocates Alley Cat Allies to raise education and support for humane and effective policies that protect feral cats.
“Alley Cat Allies launched National Feral Cat Day in 2001 to raise awareness about feral cats, promote Trap-Neuter-Return, and recognize the millions of compassionate citizens who care for cats,” said Becky Robinson, president of Alley Cat Allies. “On National Feral Cat Day and all year round, people all across the country work to draw attention to the cause and press their local leaders for humane policies for feral cats. This is truly a national movement.”
Feral cats are not socialized to people and are less adoptable, so feral cats taken to animal shelters are almost always killed. Being killed in an animal shelter remains the leading documented cause of death for cats, Robinson said. TNR ends the breeding cycle and stabilizes the population, halting further deaths.
“There is much more work to do to educate our neighbors and leaders about the need to launch humane programs that really work for our communities,” she said.
Robinson noted that the United States is responding to this need. This year’s National Feral Cat Day will see 250 events in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and Canada, including spay/neuter drives, community celebrations and workshops that educate neighbors about the best and most humane ways to help cats in the community.
For the first time, Alley Cat Allies also gave awards to a number of local nonprofits across the country for the most creative and innovative community programs, including five “National Feral Cat Day Superstars,” who were awarded $1,000 each for their unique life-saving programs.
A full listing of national events, as well as more information about how people can get involved on National Feral Cat Day, is available here. Posters, T-shirts and other fun NFCD-themed items are also available.