One woman’s birthday wish to do something for the greater good, has now turned into a mission to save the feral cats in San Diego County. In 2011, Christine Hubbard wanted to do something different for her birthday. She didn’t want a party, didn’t want fancy gifts, she wanted to honor her birthday with doing something for others. She chose to volunteer at one of the local shelters here in San Diego, because of her deep love for animals.
“Boy did I not realize how that decision was going to change my life forever.”- Christine Hubbard, Love Your Feral Felines Founder
That wish to help is what drove her to start Love Your Feral Felines, a non-profit organization dedicated to educating the public on spaying/neutering and the process of trap/neuter/return (TNR) to reduce the number of feral cats and kittens entering shelters. They also work with the local shelters to place cats that have been deemed feral and would be scheduled for euthanasia into their Barn Cat program.
- Love Your Feral Felines, works with the local shelters to place the cats that they have deemed feral or unhealthy for their adoption guidelines, and place them as working cats to give them an opportunity to live and do what cats do best, hunt. Cats that are placed into their Barn Cat Program fall under three main categories:
Cats whose litter box habits are not consistent enough to be inside only cats and/or who have lived or spent time outside per their previous owner.
- Cats who were found as strays and who may be too independent to appreciate living in a house.
- Cats who are shy/fearful of people and prefer the company of other cats and animals.
“In July 2015 San Diego animal shelters declared they will no longer be allowed to euthanize any healthy or treatable animal that enters their shelters. What people don’t know is that DOESN’T include feral cats. The reason I have to point this out is because I have noticed a very high amount of ferals being brought into the shelters every day. The shelter is not a place for ferals. The ferals don’t want to be there and the shelters don’t want them there. Ferals need to be Trap-Neuter-Return. Please don’t drop off your ferals thinking they will be saved. Unfortunately, they will still be euthanized. Euthanasia is the leading cause of death among cats and dogs in the United States. Working together, we can conquer one aspect of it. We can stop killing healthy feral cats.”
While shelters across the whole country are being inundated with kittens currently, adult cats have a low chance of being adopted and when a feline is deemed unhealthy or feral, Love Your Feral Felines could be their only option to leave the shelter alive. Adopters are always needed to help save these hunting experts. Adoption fees are extremely low, care is minimal and you know you are truly saving a life in the process. A minimum of two barn cats must be adopted at the same time, for the same location to help ensure they have the greatest success.
“Supporting a barn cat is the safest way to control the rodent population in your barn. There are no poisons for children and pets to get into and no need to set nasty traps. They will help keep rodents away from grain and food storage areas, and you’ll enjoy watching the cats as well as have the satisfaction of giving them a much-needed home! Consider adopting a barn cat.”
To learn more about Love Your Feral Felines, to volunteer or adopt a Barn Cat of your own feel free to visit their website at www.loveyourferalfelines.com
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Love Your Feral Felines is an all-volunteer run nonprofit organization based in Bonsall, CA dedicated to helping North San Diego County homeless cat population. If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Brianne Youngberg at 760-703-3344 or email at [email protected]