Kentucky is annually ranked at the lower end of the list for their animal shelters. There is not much hope for animals making it out alive. Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) is being started in many of these areas, which will help these shelter animals by freeing up space for friendly cats and dogs. Community cats (unowned and their home is outside) do not belong in a shelter. In many shelters, these cats are euthanized quickly – they have no chance to make it out alive. Groups are stepping up to change this.
One such group is Franklin County, Kentucky– TNR, a program offered through the Franklin County Humane Society (FCHS). In December, 2012, FCHS adopted TNR as one of its programs. Gae Broadwater is chair of this TNR program. Gae has worked tirelessly to make this program successful. It takes work to make TNR a reality but those of us involved in TNR call it a labor of love.
Franklin County, home to the capital of Kentucky – Frankfort, has a population of about 48,500 people and is a rural community with somewhat rugged terrain and farming. Those involved in the beginnings of this program wanted to be affiliated with FCHS because they needed a non-profit fiscal agent as none wanted or had time to operate their own 501(c)3 (This is a great tip for those of you who want to start a TNR group!)
FCHS does not have the space to accommodate TNR spay/neuter clinics so various locations have been used to help. One local business owner allowed the use of his vacant building for over 18 months for spay/neuter clinics. Franklin County Fiscal Court is allowing this group to use vacant space they share with the sheriff’s department. (This is another great tip – the location of the clinic does not need to be set in stone!)
This group also had other established groups mentor them. Its amazing what can happen when we all work together!
Franklin County, Kentucky – TNR raises half of its budgets through fundraisers. They contract with a veterinarian and vet tech for the TNR clinics. Everything else is done by volunteers. And the residents of Franklin County have been very supportive. They see the success of TNR – declining populations of community cats through compassion. Trap and Kill has not provided these type of results in the decades it has been in use. In fact, it help the number of community cats grow.
Thank you Gae Broadwater, Franklin County, Kentucky – TNR and Franklin County Humane Society for taking major steps to improve animal welfare in your community through the implementation of a TNR program. This is how positive change happens!
Beth Frank is president of Community Cats United, Inc. (Trap-Neuter-Return Community). Join the Community Cat Movement and save the lives’ of shelter animals. Trap-Neuter-Return Community has over 18,900 members and 1,000 groups in 109 countries and all 50 US states, working together to help community cats.
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