Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Feeding safely

Feed your cats somewhere safe - I see and hear of cats being fed in places that are dangerous more often than you would think. Cats need to be fed away from traffic, both human and vehicular, and should be fed at a time that does not attract too much attention. It's not so much because caregivers should be frightened of complaints, but you will be surprised at how much difference feeding a cat at prime time (when everyone is leaving or coming home from work and school) and a bit later when everyone is already home can make to people's impressions of the cats.

Managing a colony is really about managing perceptions and ideas of cats. People often do not care about cats either way, but they do not want to come home and see a colony of cats congregating because it suddenly draws home the point of how many cats there are. This is despite the fact that the same number of cats is there all the time e- if people do not see it, they do not think it is a problem. The same goes for kittens - we notice complaints go up when kittens are born because it clearly shows that the cats are reproducing. For the latter, sterilisation of course is the way to go, but if your cats are all sterilised, then it's just about changing your feeding time or location so that the cats are not as visible.

People have often said that the cats are used to a certain time and they are - but the time can be changed. It will take some time, but the cats will eventually learn and adjust accordingly. The same goes for location.

Please do not feed in an area where the cats are clearly not wanted - move the cats. If not, the cat is going to end up in someone's cat trap or get rounded up by town council, and will be killed.

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