Working Towards 0% Growth

‘Rescues and shelters in our area are overwhelmed by kittens and stray cats right now. My newsfeed is filled with calls for help – for money, for fosters, for food, for more money. All of us are invested in making a safe life for the critters that end up in our care- whether we are a small rescue operating out of a few members’ homes, the county shelter, or a national organization.

I was in a neighborhood last night swarmed with stray cats and people were stopping me as I unloaded the traps asking about what I was doing. Some of them were sincerely interested, some of them laughed and told me I wasn’t going to make a difference, and some of them gave me ideas as to why the neighborhood was overrun- a neighbor with an unfixed female on her second litter, individuals getting cats off of Craigslist and not thinking to spay or neuter.

These are not bad people. They are doing the best they can with the circumstances they have. But we can do better by them. Get the cats fixed, educate, provide the final resource that means the difference between a friendly feral, who creates two or more litters a year, and a companion animal who is healthier, happier, and part of the solution to the overwhelming number of animals making their way to the rescues.

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In an ideal world, all rescues would eventually close their doors because everyone takes the time to fix their animals. I would drink to that.

We don’t have quite that lofty a goal. Instead our focus when it comes to cats is to get as many of them fixed as quickly as possible. Get kittens off the street, socialize them, fix them, find them homes. Build relationships between our volunteers and the communities that are overrun with cats. Build relationships between those communities and those cats.

We are working towards a 0% growth within feral populations. The neighborhood I was in last night is going to take a lot of work. People are skeptical. They wonder what this is going to cost them. 0% is a huge goal, but it is not impossible. Can it be done this year? No. But in three years? Yes. It absolutely can.

Please donate to help us fulfill this mission. Every dollar makes a difference immediately, locally. We keep our overhead low by operating out of volunteer homes so more money goes right to the animals that need the help.’

 -Enya

July Trap/Neuter/Release

Last weekend marked STAR’s first large-scale TNR effort.

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Thursday and Friday night, Enya dropped traps off at our TNR sites. When STAR does a TNR, we provide traps, covers, and food. There were three sites we were trapping at.

Enya was then out and about at 5am Saturday setting everything up.

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At one location, of the three targeted ferals, two were caught-including one very territorial male that we had been keen on getting. Trapping him will make it a lot easier to grab the others that come by to feed.

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The final tally for July’s TNR- two females, seven males, and five kittens. While we were hoping for a full fifteen, nine adults fixed is definitely a good start.

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We can’t be grateful enough for our volunteers. David, Jesse, Rick, Jocelyn all went to the sites at 7am to tag the successful traps and fill out STAR’s intake forms for the trapped cats so we would know where to return each one once they’ve had a day to recover.

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Southern Tier Veterinary Associates, our veterinary partner for TNR efforts, is making a huge difference in the health and well-being of our local cats and deserve a huge kudos. Without this partnership, we wouldn’t be able to afford large scale TNRs.

If you would like to assist in our TNR efforts, please consider donating to our fundraiser. Your donation will help us reduce the number of unwanted cats in the Greater Binghamton area. By successfully meeting our goal, our TNR program will be able to trap, spay or neuter, and release 20 cats who will no longer be able to breed, and who will be less likely to fight and damage property. Every contribution helps!

Sam and Dean

The smallest (and geekiest) STAR fosters were adopted this week. We are happy to say Sam and Dean get to head to their new home together.

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Sam and Dean had been found by a Binghamton-area community member when they were around five weeks old, and were given into our care for raising.

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We are ecstatic these little orphans found their perfect family.

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Adoption Weekend

Last weekend members of STAR were at the Vestal Petsmart for an adoption event where we met some potential adopters and enjoyed being out and about and chatting with people.

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The fondly named Winchester kittens (Sam and Dean. We have some wonderfully geeky rescue members) enjoyed their time at the store in particular. They tussled when they’re awake and feisty. When they were sleepy, they curled up together. Both Sam and Dean love being held, respond well to strangers petting or holding them, and love dogs.

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Jenny and Dru, the slightly older girls, were present as well.

A huge thanks to our volunteers for being available for the event, and to everyone who stopped by to visit with us.

Meet Troll

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Troll acquired her unique name when her original owner found her under a bridge as a kitten. But that is where her likeness to her namesake ends.

Recently surrendered to the rescue, Troll has been getting settled into her foster home and getting to know her temporary feline housemates, as well as foster parent.

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Troll is a little slow to adapt to new environments, but once she’s more comfortable, she responds very positively to new people. She adores cheek and chin rubs, and will enthusiastically chase a laser pointer until she’s exhausted. She’s definitely on the shy side, but is surprisingly chatty once she relaxes. She’s cautious around new cats, but not aggressive or particularly frightened.

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Troll is about two years old, is spayed and up to date on vaccinations. If you would like an application, please email info@southerntiernaimalrescue.org, or you can call 607- 862-6811 if you would like more information.

Kitten Report

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We have another report on Jenny and Dru from Anna, a member of their foster family.

Anna says:

“Jenny and Dru are great kittens and are growing so fast. I taught them both how to go up and down stairs and they are quite good at it. They are also quite good at jumping. The kittens are sweet as can be. They are really soft and playful and love being held- for now anyways. But I think they will be lap cats when they are older. The girls are both so great, and I hope they get a great home to live in with good people who love and care about them.”

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A huge thanks to Anna and family for doing such a good job raising Jenny and Dru into the social and curious kittens they are now. If you are interested in adopting Jenny and/or Dru, please email info@southerntieranimalrescue.org or call 607- 862-6811.

The Ins and Outs of Fostering

One of the tricky things about fostering for a rescue is, well, what do you do when you have to do other things like go on vacation?
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Dean and Jasper
At STAR Network, our foster families work to help each other out. Our Vice President, Jesse, came by and picked up our two smallest kittens, Sam and Dean, as well as dear Ozzie, and will be doing foster care for them for the two weeks that I’m off getting married. This means my house sitter can manage with the smaller numbers at my home and the kittens get exposed to new and interesting places.
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Sam and Dunkin
Sam and Dean are working diligently to make sure they have been properly introduced to Dunkin the German Shepherd and Jasper the cat- the permanent residents at Jesse’s home. –Enya
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