Someone sent me a link to this video today. It’s called “Cutting Cats’ Ears? Isn’t That Mean?” Let’s go over all of the false information that is being spread in this video… I will FORCE myself to sit through it.
First of all, I really dislike how TNR is being portrayed as a cool and trendy and fun thing to do. It is NOT cool and it is NOT trendy and most of all, it is not something to be taken lightly! Due diligence should be done on ANY and ALL cats before ANYONE attempts to trap them for TNR. What is due diligence? It is research and analysis of the cat, its situation, its surroundings, the neighborhood, the environment, the colony, potential owners, etc. Too many people watch videos like this, learn nothing more about feral cats, and then the first time they see one, (or a stray) react with a conditioned response without even thinking about what they’re doing.
“If you see a cat with an ear tip, you can be sure that that cat has been spayed or neutered.”
You cannot be 100% sure that the cat has been spayed or neutered, it could have gotten into a fight which damaged the tip of the ear. You can only assume that most of the time it is a sign that the cat has been spayed or neutered.
“A cat that has been born and lived outside most of its life, doesn’t want to live inside.”
This is completely false. All of my cats were born and raised in nature by other cats. They all wanted to live inside and now do so happily without any desire of going back outside. In fact, a cat that has been born and lived outside most of its life, is super APPRECIATIVE of being inside because they are safe and no longer have to deal with predators, parasites and unkind humans. While this might not be the case for ALL of the feral cats, it is certainly the case for SOME of them, and maybe even MOST of them. More feral cats would have warm, safe, and wonderful homes if misinformation like this wasn’t being perpetuated.
“These cats don’t want to be snuggled.”
Another false statement. These cats do want to be snuggled and pro-actively seek snuggles once they have a human caregiver that they interact with and trust. Nobody wants to snuggle with some random stranger on the street. Why would a cat want to do that?
“If you find a cat that’s in pretty good condition while it’s already outside, that means it’s got a food source and it’s going to be fine when you put it back out.”
This statement REEKS of lack of due diligence as discussed above. We should NOT be encouraging every random person (and in YouTube’s case, mostly kids, teenagers, and young adults with NO cat trapping experience) to take it upon themselves to trap cats that they “find” and put them back out. If cats are going to be trapped for TNR, it needs to be done CORRECTLY by people who have experience and knowledge with doing it. And it needs to be done AFTER the cat, situation, environment, etc has been sufficiently surveyed. TNR that is done by people who have not learned how to do it correctly causes unnecessary trauma and injury to the cat.
This flippant video treats a serious and important topic that affects the health and lives of feral cats like it’s some kind of a joke, especially with all of the laughing and silly props and glasses. TNR is not a fun party game and it should not be treated as such. Doing so encourages the abuse of animals.