About

Feral Cat Caretakers' Coalition

The Founding Of The Feral Cat Caretakers Coalition (FCCC) The Feral Cat Caretakers Coalition was formed when it’s founder, Dona Cosgrove Baker, a caretaker herself, was profoundly moved by the suffering of feral cats and kittens. She was called to the often times overwhelming responsibility and commitment required to care for a large number of feral cats, scattered over several acres in an industrial area in Los Angeles, California. While caretaking, she experienced an unconscionable lack of support and understanding from the community, and on numerous occasions, overt hostility. She knew that feral cat caretakers were great in number and were caring for feral cats and kittens under similar or worse circumstances. Dona recognized that if feral cat caretakers were organized as well as effectively directed and collectively supported, they would be a forceful instrument in providing a specialized solution for humane feral cat population control and responsible long-term care.

Mission Statement

FCCC’s mission, in the interests of feral cats everywhere, is to support feral cat caretakers gain recognition and support for the beneficial role they perform in implementing successful caretaker-based solutions and methods. They are in the trenches and are the “first responders.” Specifically, our purpose and commitment are to:

  • Facilitate and support the work and commitment of caretakers in caring for feral cats and controlling feral cat population growth by implementing Trap, Neuter and Return with long-term managed care.
  • Conduct our professional, intensive Gold Standard Community Cat Workshops which provide the tools and skills for successful projects.
  • Provide a communication network and support resources for caretakers.
  • Project a strong unifying voice for feral cat caretakers and their colonies through neighborhood and city outreach.
  • Work with and educate property decision makers and city governmental agencies to promote and enact appropriate and humane long-term solutions that would benefit the feral cats and those who care for them.
  • Implement and manage the Feral Cat Programs with ongoing support.

Support for Our Caretakers

  • Training
  • Information center
  • Network for caretakers to share their experiences and information
  • Resources – food, traps, supplies and health care to ease the economic burden on caretakers
  • Hotline and emergency response capability
  • Legal stature and improved image
  • Certification
  • Credentialing and visual identification (logo, emblems, decals, badges)
  • Volunteer force to handle special needs
  • Intervention on behalf of caretakers
  • Communication through newsletters, conferences and meetings

Broaden Our Base of Resource Partners and Supporters

  • Manufacturers of cat food, pet accessories and supplies, medicine and nutritional supplement, and retail pet companies
  • Veterinarians and veterinary hospitals
  • Donors, grant issuing foundations, allied animal rights organizations

Educate the Public

  • A unified voice
  • An outreach program to increase awareness of feral cat and caretaker needs
  • Education of the public concerning feral cat issues
  • Encouragement of responsible pet ownership

Provide Legal Intervention and Provision for Long-Term Solutions

  • Model laws and regulations proposed for adoption by local governments
  • Caretaker rights advocacy
  • Negotiation with government entities and property developers/owners
  • Injunctions and other measures that facilitate caretakers’ work

The Constituencies We Serve

Our constituencies encompass the caretakers primarily, but also include animal enthusiasts, animal rights advocates, property owners and local government agencies. Our purpose is to work together with all concerned persons who are willing to be involved in solving this most pressing problem.

Our Core Philosophies

  1. The five points set forth below represent our core philosophies and drive the programs of the FCCC:
    Feral cats and kittens have a right to live and to be humanely treated and cared for.
  2. Provide managed long-term quality care in conjunction with trapping, neutering and return to home site for adult cats. (TNR) is the accepted and the best available method to control the feral cat population.
  3. Adult cats that are in jeopardy and the home site is not safe or available, must be relocated to appropriate places or sanctuaries.
  4. Kittens are taken from their colonies to continue their lives in adoptive homes.
  5. Implement solutions for the immediate and ongoing needs in supporting feral cat colonies.

Our Vision for the Future

The FCCC is being eagerly welcomed by feral cat caretakers. The response to the FCCC by independent caretakers has been nearly overwhelming. A growing stream of communication through phone calls and E-mails come in daily from caretakers hungry for information and help in managing their colonies.

Over the long term, the FCCC is committed to educating the public about the significant role that caretakers play in the lives of feral cats and kittens. An important purpose of the FCCC is to create a national educational and information center. At present, the overwhelming majority of feral cat caretakers have no voice, no rights, little support and even less awareness from the general public. The FCCC will represent and support these caring people and will disseminate valuable feral cat care information to the caretakers through our website, mailed pamphlets and a newsletter “The Voice of the Feral.”

A national trap, neuter and return (TNR) program adopted by local governments that encourages, supports and acknowledges the feral cat caretakers’ pivotal role as vital in helping to ease the population explosion and provide compassionate and quality care for feral cats. The FCCC will be a significant voice in facilitating the adoption and implementation of these programs.

Los Angeles
Population

Local officials estimate the city of Los Angeles’ feral cat population to be 3 million.*

Caretaker
Population

Throughout the United States, 17 million caretakers tend to 35 million cats.**

Caretaker
Profile

Caretakers range in age from 9 to 90 and come from all walks of life. The median age: 43.2 years.

Feral Cat
Colonies

Feral cats live in colonies where they congregate around a food source. Colonies typically number 10 to 30 cats.

Ferals Favored
Locations

Feral cats live near dumpsters, in storm drains, alleys, vacated buildings, storage areas, warehouses, and behind restaurants and supermarkets.

Why Ferals
May Not Be Seen

Ferals usually forage at night and may not venture forth to be seen during the day. They are wary of humans making it difficult for them to be observed.

The Misinformed
Public

The public and local government presently lack awareness that humane solutions to feral cat proliferation is available, causing officials to make uneducated, inhumane and short-term solutions.

Trap Neuter Return
TNR

The humane method of Trap, Neuter and Return is the only successful, proven method of controlling the population growth of feral cats.

Cost Savings for Taxpayers

Hard numbers collected and analyzed by local authorities throughout the U.S. consistently verify that the TNR method reduces costs to local governments.*** 

*Info provided by City of Los Angeles Animal Services. **Info provided by Humane Society of the United States. ***Feral Cat Coalition, San Diego, CA

Feral Cat Caretakers And Their Needs

Sadly, the plight of the feral cat caretaker is under the radar screen of the media and local governments. Their service to the community is rarely, if ever, acknowledged in the local press. Local governments are for the most part unaware of the value of the service caretakers provide. Often, local officials, property owners and others, place obstacles in their path that can be insurmountable. The physical, financial and emotional stress of these dedicated citizens having to do honorable work under some of the most adverse conditions is incomprehensible. It is a sad reality that many caretakers are forced to operate in secret because of their fear of humiliation and chastisement by strangers or abuse and threats by landlords and officials, not only to them but to the cats they care for. Feral cats living outdoors are vulnerable and unprotected. Stringent laws are needed to protect them and their caretakers. Little education is available for the average citizen as to their plight and suffering.

The dedicated feral cat caretaker has few days off. Caretakers continue their daily chores, often helpless to change their situation for the better. If the landlords of the industrial or private property on which the feral cat colony resides decide they want to destroy the cats, the caretaker has no rights and can do little to protect the colony from being destroyed. These unfortunate situations are all too common. A woman getting up in years, who is a responsible and dedicated caretaker, will often be viewed by the people in her community as an eccentric, troublesome old lady. Many of these anonymous, independent caretakers have barely enough money to feed themselves and yet they share their meager earnings or social security checks with the ferals they feed and care for. They have unselfishly opened their hearts.

Without the caretaker, feral cats will not be spayed, neutered, fed or cared for. Without the caretaker, what emerges, is not a responsible, well-maintained feral cat colony, but a group of starving, sickly cats and kittens, roaming the neighborhoods scavenging for food, seeking shelter and safety and reproducing at an uncontrolled rate. Male cats will mutilate each other over mates, hunting grounds, food sources, garbage containers and territory. The irony is that when uneducated persons attempt to destroy feral cat colonies, the vacuum created will be quickly filled by cats in adjacent areas. There will also be cats that could not be trapped, and they will continue to reproduce at random. Killing is not the answer. Caretaking with long-term management is the only successful and humane solution

The Caretakers Supply The Link That Leads To The Solution

Solving the overpopulation of feral cats and improving their lives depends upon the dedication and commitment of caretakers to provide compassionate care while implementing humane population control. In turn, the caretakers’ success in achieving these goals requires support, services, training, networking and supplemental resources to provide quality feral cat care and acceptable long term care alternatives.

Feral Cat Caretaker’s Coalition Mission & Community Cat Programs.

Our mission is to prevent  suffering , save lives, support and educate the community, by conducting our Gold Standard Community Cat Workshops. We advocate and teach methods to reduce the intake of feral/stray cats and kittens into the shelter system by teaching and implementing successful “Caretaker based solutions”. 

The Community Cat Workshops & Community Cat Programs

Workshops and programs offering a hands-on professional experience which includes caretaker based methods and solutions essential for humane outcomes. Learning the skills necessary to navigate the complexities associated with a successful return and being a “good neighbor” are essential components. We are experts in this field as substantiated by our 20 years of experience and over one thousand graduates. 

FCCC Community Cat & Rescue Programs® & TNR Projects include the following

  1. Gold Standard Community Cat Workshop.
  2. Community outreach and negotiating TNR projects for an accepted return of adult feral cats following spay/neuter
  3. Spay/neuter and veterinary care for injured or ill cats, kittens, special needs and elderly cats.
  4. In-depth humane training for trap, neuter and return projects.
  5. FCCC’s post-op boarding & treatment guidelines.
  6. Managed care, food and sheltering.
  7. Flea control, supplements and treating cats on site.
  8. Removing elderly/and or cats in need of ongoing care to safe indoor spaces.

Management and Rescue

  1. Rescuing kittens, strays and injured cats.
  2. Fostering, socializing kittens and adults for adoption.
  3. Successful relocation of feral cats, when indicated, with or without trapping.
  4. Oversight, maintenance and cleanliness at home site.
  5. Community Relations, negotiations, private and corporate-support & networking.
  6. Ongoing Scheduled trapping at locations for maintaining population control.

The Founding Of The Feral Cat Caretakers Coalition (FCCC) The Feral Cat Caretakers Coalition was formed when it’s founder, Dona Cosgrove Baker, a caretaker herself, was profoundly moved by the suffering of feral cats and kittens. She was called to the often times overwhelming responsibility and commitment required to care for a large number of feral cats, scattered over several acres in an industrial area in Los Angeles, California. While caretaking, she experienced an unconscionable lack of support and understanding from the community, and on numerous occasions, overt hostility. She knew that feral cat caretakers were great in number and were caring for feral cats and kittens under similar or worse circumstances. Dona recognized that if feral cat caretakers were organized as well as effectively directed and collectively supported, they would be a forceful instrument in providing a specialized solution for humane feral cat population control and responsible long-term care.

Mission Statement

FCCC’s mission, in the interests of feral cats everywhere, is to support feral cat caretakers gain recognition and support for the beneficial role they perform in implementing successful caretaker-based solutions and methods. They are in the trenches and are the “first responders.” Specifically, our purpose and commitment are to:

  • Facilitate and support the work and commitment of caretakers in caring for feral cats and controlling feral cat population growth by implementing Trap, Neuter and Return with long-term managed care.
  • Conduct our professional, intensive Gold Standard Community Cat Workshops which provide the tools and skills for successful projects.
  • Provide a communication network and support resources for caretakers.
  • Project a strong unifying voice for feral cat caretakers and their colonies through neighborhood and city outreach.
  • Work with and educate property decision makers and city governmental agencies to promote and enact appropriate and humane long-term solutions that would benefit the feral cats and those who care for them.
  • Implement and manage the Feral Cat Programs with ongoing support.

Support for Our Caretakers

  • Training
  • Information center
  • Network for caretakers to share their experiences and information
  • Resources – food, traps, supplies and health care to ease the economic burden on caretakers
  • Hotline and emergency response capability
  • Legal stature and improved image
  • Certification
  • Credentialing and visual identification (logo, emblems, decals, badges)
  • Volunteer force to handle special needs
  • Intervention on behalf of caretakers
  • Communication through newsletters, conferences and meetings

Broaden Our Base of Resource Partners and Supporters

  • Manufacturers of cat food, pet accessories and supplies, medicine and nutritional supplement, and retail pet companies
  • Veterinarians and veterinary hospitals
  • Donors, grant issuing foundations, allied animal rights organizations

Educate the Public

  • A unified voice
  • An outreach program to increase awareness of feral cat and caretaker needs
  • Education of the public concerning feral cat issues
  • Encouragement of responsible pet ownership

Provide Legal Intervention and Provision for Long-Term Solutions

  • Model laws and regulations proposed for adoption by local governments
  • Caretaker rights advocacy
  • Negotiation with government entities and property developers/owners
  • Injunctions and other measures that facilitate caretakers’ work

The Constituencies We Serve

Our constituencies encompass the caretakers primarily, but also include animal enthusiasts, animal rights advocates, property owners and local government agencies. Our purpose is to work together with all concerned persons who are willing to be involved in solving this most pressing problem.

Our Core Philosophies

  1. The five points set forth below represent our core philosophies and drive the programs of the FCCC:
    Feral cats and kittens have a right to live and to be humanely treated and cared for.
  2. Provide managed long-term quality care in conjunction with trapping, neutering and return to home site for adult cats. (TNR) is the accepted and the best available method to control the feral cat population.
  3. Adult cats that are in jeopardy and the home site is not safe or available, must be relocated to appropriate places or sanctuaries.
  4. Kittens are taken from their colonies to continue their lives in adoptive homes.
  5. Implement solutions for the immediate and ongoing needs in supporting feral cat colonies.

Our Vision for the Future

The FCCC is being eagerly welcomed by feral cat caretakers. The response to the FCCC by independent caretakers has been nearly overwhelming. A growing stream of communication through phone calls and E-mails come in daily from caretakers hungry for information and help in managing their colonies.

Over the long term, the FCCC is committed to educating the public about the significant role that caretakers play in the lives of feral cats and kittens. An important purpose of the FCCC is to create a national educational and information center. At present, the overwhelming majority of feral cat caretakers have no voice, no rights, little support and even less awareness from the general public. The FCCC will represent and support these caring people and will disseminate valuable feral cat care information to the caretakers through our website, mailed pamphlets and a newsletter “The Voice of the Feral.”

A national trap, neuter and return (TNR) program adopted by local governments that encourages, supports and acknowledges the feral cat caretakers’ pivotal role as vital in helping to ease the population explosion and provide compassionate and quality care for feral cats. The FCCC will be a significant voice in facilitating the adoption and implementation of these programs.

Los Angeles
Population

Local officials estimate the city of Los Angeles’ feral cat population to be 3 million.*

Caretaker
Population

Throughout the United States, 17 million caretakers tend to 35 million cats.**

Caretaker
Profile

Caretakers range in age from 9 to 90 and come from all walks of life. The median age: 43.2 years.

Feral Cat
Colonies

Feral cats live in colonies where they congregate around a food source. Colonies typically number 10 to 30 cats.

Ferals Favored
Locations

Feral cats live near dumpsters, in storm drains, alleys, vacated buildings, storage areas, warehouses, and behind restaurants and supermarkets.

Why Ferals
May Not Be Seen

Ferals usually forage at night and may not venture forth to be seen during the day. They are wary of humans making it difficult for them to be observed.

The Misinformed
Public

The public and local government presently lack awareness that humane solutions to feral cat proliferation is available, causing officials to make uneducated, inhumane and short-term solutions.

Trap Neuter Return
TNR

The humane method of Trap, Neuter and Return is the only successful, proven method of controlling the population growth of feral cats.

Cost Savings for Taxpayers

Hard numbers collected and analyzed by local authorities throughout the U.S. consistently verify that the TNR method reduces costs to local governments.*** 

*Info provided by City of Los Angeles Animal Services. **Info provided by Humane Society of the United States. ***Feral Cat Coalition, San Diego, CA

Feral Cat Caretakers And Their Needs

Sadly, the plight of the feral cat caretaker is under the radar screen of the media and local governments. Their service to the community is rarely, if ever, acknowledged in the local press. Local governments are for the most part unaware of the value of the service caretakers provide. Often, local officials, property owners and others, place obstacles in their path that can be insurmountable. The physical, financial and emotional stress of these dedicated citizens having to do honorable work under some of the most adverse conditions is incomprehensible. It is a sad reality that many caretakers are forced to operate in secret because of their fear of humiliation and chastisement by strangers or abuse and threats by landlords and officials, not only to them but to the cats they care for. Feral cats living outdoors are vulnerable and unprotected. Stringent laws are needed to protect them and their caretakers. Little education is available for the average citizen as to their plight and suffering.

The dedicated feral cat caretaker has few days off. Caretakers continue their daily chores, often helpless to change their situation for the better. If the landlords of the industrial or private property on which the feral cat colony resides decide they want to destroy the cats, the caretaker has no rights and can do little to protect the colony from being destroyed. These unfortunate situations are all too common. A woman getting up in years, who is a responsible and dedicated caretaker, will often be viewed by the people in her community as an eccentric, troublesome old lady. Many of these anonymous, independent caretakers have barely enough money to feed themselves and yet they share their meager earnings or social security checks with the ferals they feed and care for. They have unselfishly opened their hearts.

Without the caretaker, feral cats will not be spayed, neutered, fed or cared for. Without the caretaker, what emerges, is not a responsible, well-maintained feral cat colony, but a group of starving, sickly cats and kittens, roaming the neighborhoods scavenging for food, seeking shelter and safety and reproducing at an uncontrolled rate. Male cats will mutilate each other over mates, hunting grounds, food sources, garbage containers and territory. The irony is that when uneducated persons attempt to destroy feral cat colonies, the vacuum created will be quickly filled by cats in adjacent areas. There will also be cats that could not be trapped, and they will continue to reproduce at random. Killing is not the answer. Caretaking with long-term management is the only successful and humane solution

The Caretakers Supply The Link That Leads To The Solution

Solving the overpopulation of feral cats and improving their lives depends upon the dedication and commitment of caretakers to provide compassionate care while implementing humane population control. In turn, the caretakers’ success in achieving these goals requires support, services, training, networking and supplemental resources to provide quality feral cat care and acceptable long term care alternatives.

Feral Cat Caretaker’s Coalition Mission & Community Cat Programs.

Our mission is to prevent  suffering , save lives, support and educate the community, by conducting our Gold Standard Community Cat Workshops. We advocate and teach methods to reduce the intake of feral/stray cats and kittens into the shelter system by teaching and implementing successful “Caretaker based solutions”. 

The Community Cat Workshops & Community Cat Programs

Workshops and programs offering a hands-on professional experience which includes caretaker based methods and solutions essential for humane outcomes. Learning the skills necessary to navigate the complexities associated with a successful return and being a “good neighbor” are essential components. We are experts in this field as substantiated by our 20 years of experience and over one thousand graduates. 

FCCC Community Cat & Rescue Programs® & TNR Projects include the following

  1. Gold Standard Community Cat Workshop.
  2. Community outreach and negotiating TNR projects for an accepted return of adult feral cats following spay/neuter
  3. Spay/neuter and veterinary care for injured or ill cats, kittens, special needs and elderly cats.
  4. In-depth humane training for trap, neuter and return projects.
  5. FCCC’s post-op boarding & treatment guidelines.
  6. Managed care, food and sheltering.
  7. Flea control, supplements and treating cats on site.
  8. Removing elderly/and or cats in need of ongoing care to safe indoor spaces.

Management and Rescue

  1. Rescuing kittens, strays and injured cats.
  2. Fostering, socializing kittens and adults for adoption.
  3. Successful relocation of feral cats, when indicated, with or without trapping.
  4. Oversight, maintenance and cleanliness at home site.
  5. Community Relations, negotiations, private and corporate-support & networking.
  6. Ongoing Scheduled trapping at locations for maintaining population control.