A lifetime saving cats

Victoria St. John now runs a non-profit animal-rescue organization

Victoria St. John recently held a holiday fundraiser to help with her animal-rescue efforts.

Victoria St. John recently held a holiday fundraiser to help with her animal-rescue efforts. Photo by Stephen Bartlett.

— “In 2004 we incorporated and became a non-profit,” St. John said. “I operate out of my house, and we have four board members.”

St. John Feral cat Fund is not a shelter.

“I don’t believe in shelters,” St. John said. “It’s like a prison, where you hold animals in cages until they can be adopted.”

Instead, the Town of Plattsburgh resident uses foster homes for a short time frame and “better adoption.”

“I think I have taken one cat back in 10 years.”

The non-profit advocates non-lethal feline population control and raises awareness by providing the public with information on feral and stray cat issues, including controlling populations within colonies through Trap-Neuter-Return. Under that management plan, stray and feral cats living outdoors are humanely trapped, evaluated, vaccinated, sterilized and ear tipped for identification by veterinarians.

“We are adoption partners with PetSmart,” St. John said.

She receives 75 to 100 complaint calls in a week. She fosters constantly, but it is more than she can handle. St. John works seven days a week, with little time for friends beyond cats. There are some volunteers but no paid employees.

“We just keep going from problem to problem,” she said. “We can’t catch up and are constantly doing fundraisers.”

The toughest part of the job is walking away from situations that are legal but not ethical, such as when she came across 17 dogs chained to barrels. Of course, St. John doesn’t believe in leash laws.

“Go chain your kids up,” St. John quipped. “Why are we chaining something?”

The reward is taming a feral cat, connecting with it and offering the animal a chance at happiness.

“You do what you think is right,” St. John said. “But we can only do so much.”

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WoodsGuy 3 years, 7 months ago

If you do your research you'll quickly find out that ANY TNR program and their advocates are making absolute fools out of everyone that they con with their nonsense. Not only causing untold damage of wildlife and further spread of deadly diseases but are also doing ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to curtail cats' breeding rates.

Not even ONE TNR program has EVER trapped more than 0.4% of existing cats in any one area for over a decade now. They simply cannot trap them faster than they breed out of control, no matter what they do. And those cats that learn to evade traps go on to produce offspring that now also know how to evade any trapping method used. This is why, due to TNR-Advocates' insistence that they have the "solution for everyone", our feral-cat population has now climbed to an ecologically-deadly 150 MILLION feral cats across the USA. Soon to turn into 1.5 BILLION cats within the year if you apply cats' breeding rates to previous population numbers.

Find whatever way that you can to destroy all feral and stray cats on-sight. Avoid using traps if at all possible because trapping is what slowed everything down to where cat populations have now sky-rocketed out of control.

On advice of the local sheriff where I live I used a .22 equipped with a good illuminated-scope and a laser-sight for use when they are most active, dusk to dawn. I shot every last one of them on my property to try to restore all the native wildlife to proper balance. Mission accomplished! The cost was only 0.3 CENT per cat this way (got 5000 rounds on sale for only $15). And contrary to another famous "vacuum effect" TNR-Advocate's bald-faced LIE ... NO CATS REPLACED THEM. The NATIVE predators and their required NATIVE prey that WAS here and BELONGS here is what replaced these lousy invasive-species cats that destroyed the native food-chain.

May you have as much success as I did, and so inexpensively too.

p.s. Avoid the use of poisons if at all possible that, if released into the food-chain, might harm the very wildlife that you are trying to save from destruction by cats. And please bury or incinerate the carcasses so all the highly toxic diseases that cats now carry won't go on to harm or infect more wildlife or humans. Which, if you do a Google search, now even includes cats spreading The Plague in the USA. So much for that myth that cats would have saved people from The Plague in Europe, cats would have made it far worse!


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