With as many as 50 million feral cats roaming the streets in the United States, Trap-Neuter-Return has grown in popularity as a humane solution to a growing problem.
During TNR, caretakers capture feral cats and arrange for them to be fixed, vaccinated and then released back into their colony. To aid in identification, neutered feral cats have the tip of their left ear removed in a procedure aptly called ear-tipping.
These caretakers provide regular food and some shelter to the feral cat colonies, often forming deep bonds. Lisa Barbella and I followed local caretakers with Hyde Park Cats on their nightly visits to their colonies, as well as interviewed Jenny Schlueter, director of development of Tree House Humane Society.