University and college campuses are quite often home to many feral cats, and fortunately, organizations have been forming over the past 20 years specifically to care for campus cats. These groups implement TNR programs, feed and monitor the cats, and often rescue adoptable cats and find them homes. If you’ve ever strolled across a college campus after dark, you may have seen some of the matriculated felines making their way to a designated feeding station or helping with mouse maintenance.
If you are a student, staff or faculty member, or even a community member on or near a college or university campus, there may already be a program that you can get involved with. If not, there are tons of resources that can help you get one started and examples of successful programs that you can look to for inspiration. The folks at Alley Cat Allies have been instrumental in supporting the creation of campus cat programs across the US. Start by visiting their Campus Cats program page for links to useful resources, including a brochure that you can purchase to handout when talking to people on campus about TNR.
Make sure to read the article “TNR is Effective on College Campuses,” which outlines some studies that show just how effective the campus cat programs have been at reducing the number of feral cats on college and university campuses, plus don’t miss the podcast with the founders of the Towson University Cats on Campus program. They discuss how important it is to have the support of university administration in order to create a successful program.
Here are some of the campus cat programs already established in the US:
- Stanford Cat Network – Stanford University, Stanford, CA
- UNT Feral Cat Rescue Group – University of North Texas, Denton, TX
- SMU Feral Cat Program – Southern Methodist Univeristy, Dallas, TX
- Friends of Campus Cats – University of Washington, Seattle, WA
- Mildcats at ASU – Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ
- The Aggie Feral Cat Alliance of Texas – Texas A&M University, College Station, TX
- UTA Campus Cat Coalition – The University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX
- CSULB Campus Feral Cats Program – California State University, Long Beach
- The Feline Medicine Club: Feral Cat Project – University of California at Davis
- The Campus Cat Coalition – The University of Texas at Austin
The Stanford Cat Network is one of the oldest campus cat programs in the country and they have outstanding resources on their website, including down-loadable info sheets and links to articles and other information about feral cats and TNR.
We hope you will find these resources and examples helpful. Please consider getting involved with a group at your local college or university. If you are not involved with or don’t live near a college campus, stay tuned for more resources for helping feral cats in the general community.
Do you work with a campus cat organization? Please leave a comment on this post telling us about the group and be sure to include a link to their website.
Special Announcement from Moderncat Studio
I am grateful to a very special campus cat program here in Arizona. I attended graduate school, and later worked as a staff member, at Arizona State University where I became involved with Mildcats at ASU, a group of dedicated faculty, staff, and students who TNR and care for the many cats on the ASU campuses in Tempe, Phoenix, and Mesa, AZ. This is the organization that first introduced me to TNR and taught me how to do it. We went trapping with Carmen Febus, a long-time member of Mildcats, who showed us how to use the traps and explained a lot about TNR. Mildcats also adopts out dozens of abandoned cats. They do wonderful work.
I am pleased to announce a new program through Moderncat Studio! Each month a different cat-related charity will receive 5% of the gross sales from that month, starting with Mildcats for the month of September. I decided to give 5% of the total sale, rather than 5% of “profits” so you would know exactly how much of your purchase is going to help the cats. So 5% of all sales through the Moderncat Studio Etsy shop and any other sales outlets in the month of September will be donated to Mildcats as a thank you for all the hard work they do. Keep up the great work!