City, Humane Society team up for TNR Program

Published 9:13 am Wednesday, July 6, 2022

The Bainbridge Decatur County Humane Society, along with the City of Bainbridge, is proud to announce the start of a TNR program for feral and community cats. TNR will utilize the proven method of trap-neuter-return (TNR). TNR entails using humane live traps, and neutering, vaccinating, and returning community cats to their original outdoor locations. Targeted TNR is not only the most humane method of preventing cats from entering the shelter system, it is the most effective. TNR also ensures the cats’ health and welfare. Once these cats are sterilized and vaccinated, they can live healthy, happy lives in their communities, where caring residents look out for them. Sterilization and vaccination provide a public health benefit to the community, too, a vast improvement over the failed trap-and-kill approach that has been used for generations.

Trap-neuter-return is a humane, non-lethal alternative to the trap-and-kill method of controlling cat populations. Trap-neuter-return (TNR) is a management technique in which homeless, free-roaming (community) cats are humanely trapped, evaluated and sterilized by a licensed veterinarian, vaccinated against rabies, and then returned to their original habitat.

In the long term, TNR lowers the numbers of cats in the community more effectively than trap-and-kill. TNR provides a non-lethal, humane way to effectively manage these community cat populations. Stopping the breeding is more effective than the traditional trap-and-kill method in lowering the numbers of cats in a community long-term.

Trapping and killing homeless animals is not only unpalatable to the public, it’s a costly and ineffective method of population control. TNR programs are being adopted by towns and municipalities across the nation out of necessity and good common sense. Through attrition and sterilization efforts, fewer cats will be breeding and contributing to the population growth and fewer live animals to deal with inevitably means a decrease in the demand on taxpayer dollars.

Ashley White, Shelter Director of BDCHS, said:
“This is a significant action for Decatur County; not only are we implementing a best practice that will help bring our community to the forefront of animal welfare in in Georgia, but more importantly, the program will save the lives of thousands of cats each year, and over time, reduce the number of free-roaming cats in the community. Bainbridge Humane Society is profoundly grateful to the City of Bainbridge and the Decatur County Commissioners, local veterinarian, Cliff Bailey, and staff at Port City Animal Hospital, South Georgia Low Cost Spay & Neuter Clinic, as well as Best Friends Animal Society for their generous support of this program.”

People interested in learning more about BDCHS’ Community Cat Program may contact: bainbridgedchs@bellsouth.net or 229-246-0101.

Please be aware that due to limited vet availability, there may be a waiting list for citizens to make an appointment to bring a community cat in for TNVR. Traps will be available for loan with a $50 deposit from the Decatur County resident wishing to borrow one. Deposits are refunded at the return of the loaned trap.