Our Community Cat Program aims to reduce shelter death through targeted sterilization of Fort Wayne and Allen County’s free-roaming cat population. Operated collaboratively by Humane Fort Wayne and Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control, this program utilizes a Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) model and strives to humanely catch, sterilize, rabies vaccinate, microchip and ear-tip free-roaming and stray cats. This proven method is the only way to save lives and improve our community’s free-roaming felines’ health and reduce overpopulation at the same time.
Community cats are free-roaming cats or kittens that have no identifiable owners. It is estimated that there are thousands of felines living in our region that have to fend for themselves. These cats are reproducing at an alarming rate, adding to the already heavy burden of pet overpopulation.
Community cats are typically not adoptable. They have a home—outdoors. These cats live and thrive in every landscape, from the inner city to rural farmland. When they enter shelters they drain the already limited resources and take up space. This is very stressful for the cat and costly for the community. By spaying or neutering a free-roaming cat, and returning it to the area that it is from, we can begin to sterilize that area and reduce the number of cats entering shelters. TNR – Trap Neuter Return is a proven plan that is effective in reducing the number of free-roaming cats in our community.
If you need help trapping and/or arranging spay/neuter surgery for free-roaming cats in your area, the first step is to submit a Community Cat Assistance application. Once we receive the application, we will contact you to discuss any options for assistance that are currently available.
Community Cat Walk-in Schedule
We will accept Walk-ins Monday-Wednesday ONLY
$40.00 Outdoor Community Cat Package (Includes spay/neuter surgery, rabies vaccine, microchip, pain medication and ear tip)
Drop off is at 8:00 a.m. and we will aim for same day pick up at 3:45p.m. We cannot guarantee community cat surgeries will be accepted or completed the same day
No food past midnight the night prior and keep indoors the night prior if possible.
Caretakers can only bring two cats at a time. Must come in separate lives traps or cat carriers with doors that close.
Holidays will change the schedule drastically. Call to inquire.
For surgical availability updates, please call our Clinic at 260 420-7729 and leave a voicemail.
What is an Ear-Tip?
Ear-tipping is a nationally recognized way to identify sterilized and vaccinated cats. It is difficult to get close to some community cats; so the identification must be visible from a distance. Immediate visual identification is necessary to prevent an unnecessary second trapping and surgery. This is done while the cat is under anesthesia. Ear-tipping removes the top 1/3 of the left ear.
The Vacuum Effect
Catching and killing feral cats is the traditional approach for feral cats. Catch and kill attempts may temporarily reduce the number of feral cats in a given area, but two things happen: intact survivors continue to breed, and other cats move in to the now-available territory. This is a phenomenon known as the vacuum effect, and it is documented worldwide.
With TNR, there are no more kittens; the population stabilizes. And the returned neutered cats’ lives are improved. Behaviors and stresses associated with pregnancy and mating, such as yowling or fighting, stop.