This is from the heart and not the brain…
Introduction from Michael: I asked Dee to tell people how she helps to protect feral cats when they are being fed and TNR’d. I asked because we know there are quite a lot of people who like to kill feral cats.
Caretaking feral cats is a commitment that I take seriously. There is so much more to it than feeding and TNR (trap-neuter-return). They require protection. It’s said that the only beings that kill without provocation are man and sharks. It’s frightening that humans want to kill cats, but it’s reality.
The protective steps that I take are very simple:
KNOW YOUR CATS
Count them, really look at them, watch how they interact, pick up on out of character behaviors etc..
Scan the environment for signs of intrusion – that bucket on its side with standing water in it or that empty cat food can that was never there before didn’t just “blow in”.
CHOOSE AND ENGAGE A SECONDARY PERSON AS A BACKUP
NEVER, EVER divulge the location of a colony to ANYONE but your secondary person
TRUST YOUR GUT
If you sense something is wrong, it probably is. Change routines periodically – feed and show up at different times. Patterns to abusers are the same as bank blueprints to a robber. If there is imminent danger, you can always move your colony to a safer place. This is very hard and I have only helped with one of these 4 years ago. You will need help.