Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) Program FAQ


What is TNR?

  • Trap-neuter-return is a humane, non-lethal method of controlling cat populations. Homeless, free-roaming (community) cats are humanely trapped, evaluated and spayed/neutered by a licensed veterinarian, vaccinated against rabies, ear tipped, and then returned to their original habitat.


What is an ear tip? Why is it necessary?

  • We use the words “ear tip” to describe when a small portion of the tip of a cat’s ear is surgically removed during neuter surgery as part of a TNR program to show that the cat has been sterilized and vaccinated. Ear tipping is done while the cat is anesthetized and is not painful for the cat. Ear tipping is the most effective way to identify sterilized community cats from a distance, to make sure they are not trapped or undergo surgery a second time.


Why is TNR important?

  • Stopping the breeding of stray cats over time helps to lower the number of cats in the community. These programs create safer communities and promote public health by reducing the number of unvaccinated cats. Sterilizing community cats reduces or even eliminates the behaviors that can lead to nuisance complaints, such as spraying urine. TNR can also improve the wellbeing of free-roaming cats. When males are neutered, they are no longer compelled to maintain a large territory or fight over mates, and females are no longer forced to endure the physical and mental demands of giving birth and fending for their young.  Friendly cats or young kittens are pulled to be sent to foster homes for socialization and then placed for adoption to find indoor forever homes, which also lowers the number of stray cats.


Where are you targeting?

  • Funding has been provided by the City of Lancaster and now Fairfield County so we are able to provide TNR services for any stray cat within Fairfield County.


When does it take place?

  • We hold TNR surgery days every other Wednesday and every Friday.  Trapping of cats is done on Tuesday or Thursday afternoons and evenings.  A consistent feeding schedule of your stray cats is an important part of trapping.  Withholding of food the meal before trapping is necessary to make trapping most effective.


How do we participate?

  • Community participation is key to the success of a TNR program. If you care for a colony of stray cats, please complete the form below to be added to our interest list.
  • As a small organization, we heavily rely on help from the community to trap cats, transport them to the shelter for surgery, and return them to their original location for release. We will provide traps for anyone willing to help trap and transport cats. We understand that trapping/transport may not be an option for everyone so we can try and make arrangements to help with that.  You will be added to our TNR list and contacted when we will be in your area.  We are aiming to target the most heavily populated areas first and then fan out from there. Though funding has been provided to keep the TNR program free for now, it is limited – so donations are appreciated to help maintain the program.
  • We are not a TNR specific organization and we have many hats that we wear.  We do, however, feel that this program can help on so many levels.  With that said, we offer different services for those with a stray cat or owned cat if this program does not fit your needs.