Experts estimate there are as many as 41 million street or stray cats in the United States today. That’s 85% of the estimated homeless animal population in the country.
Without a concerted effort to humanely care for these community cats, their numbers keep rising. This can lead to excessive costs for animal control, high cat euthanasia rates, overcrowding of animal shelters and other challenges.
But with policies and programs that support community cats, cities can reduce their number, improve their quality of life and help minimize the complaints that residents have about cats in their neighborhoods.
This toolkit offers an overview of community cat care, as well as model legislation supporting trap-neuter-return (TNR) programs and vaccination. National and international organizations like International Cat Care (ICC), Humane Society of the United States, Human Animal Support Services and Alley Cat Allies offer extensive resources to help.
We hope that by providing this overview, we can help more cities start on the path to another program that helps pets and people live healthy, happy lives together.
Understanding Community Cats
- Common Questions about Community Cats
- Understanding Outdoor Cats and Care Needs
- Collaborate for Cat Population Management
- Benefits of Community Cat Programs
Tools for Cities
- Model Ordinance for Trap-Neuter-Vaccinate-Return Programs
- Policies That Can Stand in the Way of Community Cat Care
- Case Study: Nashville Pet Community Center
- Case Study: Miami Beach Community Cat Program
- Case Study: Williamson County Working Cat Program
Tools for Citizens
- Ways to Help Community Cats in Your City
- Sample Letter of Support for a Community Cat Program
- How to Reduce Nuisances from Community Cats
More Resources to Explore
Here are links to more in-depth community cat program information: