When I came across this information while researching an article on TNR I knew it was something I wanted to write on because it would greatly aid feral colony caregivers. Read on about the Toronto Recovery Centre for feral cats in central Scarborough.
Their website states
“In early December 2012, the Recovery Centre opened in a City of Toronto complex in central Scarborough, close to the Feral Spay Neuter Clinic at the Toronto Animal Services East Shelter. Here, volunteers from Toronto Cat Rescue provide a safe and healthy space for feral/stray cats to recover from their spay/neuter surgery, prior to being returned to their colonies.
Many caretakers live in apartments or other situations with no room to keep a cat or multiple cats,
prior to and following surgery. Feedback from colony caretakers identified the lack of recovery space as a significant obstacle to TNR efforts. This feedback pushed the City and the Coalition to address the shortfall of a space to recover cats.”
Feral colony caregivers aren’t comprised solely of retired women and men. Caregivers often have families, hold down full-time jobs or live in places that don’t allow several cats to be kept while they recover anywhere from 12-72 hours from spay/neuter surgery.
The Recovery Center can provide recovery space for up to 40 cats with volunteer levels and present equipment. It’s offered free to cats and caregivers where the cat is from a registered colony within the City of Toronto and provided the caregiver has taken the TNR Workshop course offered by Community Cats Toronto.
A small fee is charged by the Center if the cat was trapped outside the city of Toronto or if the caretaker hasn’t taken the TNR Workshop course.
More information on full procedures can be found here. I’ve also included standard recovery times listed below for those who don’t know how long a feral should be kept before being released. More information cat be found on the Facebook: Community Cats Toronto page.
Standard Recovery Times
Recovery times are based on TNR best practices and are as follows:
Healthy male – 24 hours
Healthy female – 24-48 hours
Lactating female – 12 hours
Late term spay abort – 48-72 hours
I imagine this type of setup would be more efficient in large cities than in towns with little to no TNR being done. TNR in my area once consisted of a clinic being held one day a month where the cat would be brought in around 7:30 a.m. and could be picked up between 4:30 and 5:00 p.m. This was difficult for those of us who held jobs, but it was better than what eventually took place when the clinic lost their vet.
Now local feral cats have to be trapped and be transported on a 130 (plus)-mile round trip where they have to be at the Humane Society by 6:30 a.m. and be picked up at around 6 p.m. when they return. Not at ALL convenient for anyone who has a job and I imagine it’s a bit uncomfortable for a cat to have to travel so far in a van with a bunch of other terrified cats.
It would be nice if all cities could make something like the Toronto Recovery Centre happen. It might even put more cats out of the kitten-making business.
Do any of the readers have anything like this recovery center in the area where you live? I’m curious as to whether the center in Toronto is one-of-a-kind.
Did you find this article useful and interesting? Can it be improved? Please tell me in a comment. I am always keen to improve the site for animal welfare and reader enjoyment.