By Bob Gordon, FOTAS Director of Communications
Aiken veterinarians Holly Woltz and Cindy Brown are helping FOTAS with its Trap/Neuter/Return (TNR) program and have already fixed close to 300 community and feral cats for local residents.
“I became partners with FOTAS and the County Shelter because I’ve seen the gut-wrenching consequences of cat overpopulation,” said Dr. Woltz, Chief of Staff for Veterinary Services. “The numbers are still too high with these feral cats, and the shelter has a limited budget…stretched to a tiny thread to meet many needs. Since we can spay/neuter these animals for FOTAS at a very low price, I volunteered our services. FOTAS needs every penny!”
TNR is regarded as the most humane and effective way to control feral cat population growth. Using this method, all the feral cats in a colony are trapped, neutered/spayed and then returned to their territory, where they continue to thrive on their own. Young kittens that can still be socialized, as well as friendly adults, are placed in foster care and eventually adopted out to loving homes.
Dr. Brown, who practices at Aiken Animal Hospital, also began volunteering her practice’s services to FOTAS late last year, and says by all accounts TNR seems to be working.
“Any time that FOTAS volunteers or the County Shelter calls for help, we accommodate their needs whenever possible to help the stray animal situation in Aiken,” she said.
“I cannot stress enough the importance of education to aid in the [cat overpopulation] problem and we will continue to help spay and /or neuter as many stray animals as we can,” she added.
Since launching the TNR Program in 2013, FOTAS has paid for the surgeries of more than 870 community cats. If you have feral cats that need to be neutered, please call our Fix-a-Pet hotline, (803) 507-6315.
“The TNR program is a socially responsible and compassionate approach to serving these cats and the public,” said Dr. Woltz. “As a result, cats live healthier and more peaceful lives.”
The County also provides traps and can do a limited amount of spay/neuter surgeries for feral and community cats. If you need financial assistance with spay/neutering your domesticated cat or dog, the County has vouchers you can apply for at the shelter and FOTAS can also help through the Fix-A-Pet Program.
Please donate to FOTAS to support the TNR and Fix-A-Pet programs, as well as provide other assistance to the homeless animals at the County Shelter. To make a donation, you can go to our website, FOTASaiken.org, or bring your contribution to the shelter at 333 Wire Road in Aiken. And while you’re there, visit our adoptable animals. The shelter is still at full capacity and the steady stream of homeless animals being brought through our doors has not let up. If you are looking for a cat (or dog), NOW is a great time to find a furry companion at the County Shelter.
Their lives are in our hands…