TRANSPORT TO LOW COST SPAY/NEUTER CLINICS:
Good Shepherd provides regular transports for cats to and from low cost spay/neuter/vaccinate clinics. There is no charge for the transports!
Fees for low cost spay/neuter and vaccinations combined average $50 per cat at most clinics.
Kittens should be at least 8 weeks and weigh two pounds. Do not send cats or kittens to clinic if they have ring worm or diarrhea.
Clinics require each animal be in a separate hard sided cat carrier. Good Shepherd has carriers for loan and also humane traps designed for cats that allow them to be housed in the trap for a couple days before surgery and a day afterward before release. Cats can have food and water, even bedding and a box in our traps. If you are feeding feral or wild or just very shy cats these traps are ideal. We also have two box traps for catching several cats at once. We do not charge to loan traps and carriers.
Female cats in heat and pregnant cats can safely be spayed and in fact this is safer for them than giving birth outside especially if they are very young or have had multiple litters. Their kittens do not suffer during the spay. The pre-anesthesia injection stops the kittens hearts and they are removed still inside the uterus.
Cats are always fertile, do not have to be in heat to get pregnant and can get pregnant while nursing. Cats can get pregnant at 16 weeks of age.
One of the clinics with which we work does a ﬂank spay so that a nursing mother cat can ﬁnish nursing kittens after the spay. A side incision also makes it easier for you to monitor the incision while she heals.
We encourage everyone to have both female and male cats spay/neutered. Male cats start to mark territory at 16 weeks. Unless they are neutered they will roam and get into ﬁghts, which spreads diseases among cats.
Call Vicki at 515-314-5766 or email at goodshepherdPAMC@gmail.com for more information.
There is often a waiting list for transports so it is best to contact us ASAP.
TRAP, NEUTER, AND RETURN (TNR) – WHY WE DO IT
TNR ( is the only way to reduce cat populations that is both effective and humane. It is not an immediate solution. It requires some time and effort.
According to nationwide statistics 70% of cats put into shelters every year end up euthanized. This is especially the case for feral or wild cats who have had little or no contact with people.
Yet, community cats that have been trapped, neutered, vaccinated and released back to their colonies can and do live as long as indoor cats if they also have adequate shelter and food.
Once 50-75% of the cats in a town or area have been neutered, vaccinated and released their numbers begin to level off and decline over subsequent years provided there is still an active low cost spay/neuter program and clinics available.
According to a landmark study conducted by the University of Florida over 2 years in one zip code euthanasia rates at local shelters declined 95% as the intake of cats by animal control declined by 70%.
HOW WE SUPPORT TNR
In addition to helping get cats and kittens to low cost spay/neuter clinics assist with the following:
- Grants to help owners in need with spay/neuter
- Winter shelters and straw
- Assistance with the ongoing cost of flea/tick prevention/treatment and worming for outside colonies
- Food for outside colonies for owners who need help
- Some assistance with vet bills for people feeding outside colonies
Other Help for TNR Colonies and Caregivers
FACE in Indianapolis, IN, exists to support the care of outside cats throughout the greater Indianapolis area. People looking after outside cats all over the U.S. and internationally utilize FACE’s very useful website and/or follow FACE on Facebook (Link to FACE site and FB page)
Alley Cat Allies was created to save and help feral and free roaming cats. Its site also has a wealth of information on caring for outside cats. Its page on outside shelters lists and rates all commercially available cat shelters and also contains detailed instructions on homemade shelters.
Best Friends Animal Society in Utah is the largest animal sanctuary in the country and a pioneer in improving the treatment of cats, dogs and other animals. Its information for owners of cats with FIV (feline immune suppression) and FELV (feline leukemia) is very helpful and includes the opportunity to interact with other owners of these special cats.
Get Informed: Discover the Truth about Feral Cats
Outdoor cats have existed alongside humans and birds for 10,000 years. They are not a new phenomenon. Feral and stray cats live and thrive in every landscape from inner city to rural landscape provided they have food and shelter.
Feral cats are not socialized to people.
Shelters do not have time to socialize feral cats and for most of these cats being taken to a shelter means either euthanasia or being caged for years.
Each cat is different and some feral cats in time become tame inside cats, but many belong outside and can live long healthy lives there with food and shelter after spay/neuter/ vaccinations.
As members of the cat species feral cats are protected under state anti-cruelty laws. THIS INCLUDES DUMPING, WHICH IS ILLEGAL FOR ALL CATS AND DOGS UNDER IOWA LAW (Ch 717B.8, IOWA CODE).