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#ManchesterCatTrap Project & Pet Food Distribution

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Also the Dr. John P. Ruffing DVM Pet Food Distribution Projects

In December, we took over as caretakers for a colony close to our home - we thought were caring for three kittens who needed to be TNVRd (Trapped, Neuter/Spayed, Vaccinated, and Returned) but we quickly realized the colony was overrun with cats - close to 20. 

Between January and March, I trapped 12 cats. Some were friendly enough to be placed with foster groups. Most had to be released back into the community. I had plenty of traps, time, permission to be on the property, and access to a vet clinic. But it was clear that trapping one by one was going to take forever. I got to know other caretakers in Manchester and realized that we drew lots of stray, abandoned, and otherwise homeless cats. We needed to try something bigger. 

Our colony was near an abandoned home known locally as "Miss Mary Jane's house" - Miss Mary Jane was a local cat lady in the 70's and 80's  - a woman with a spiritual connection to homeless cats. Some of her belongings are still in the house, offering comfort and safety for the cats who seek refuge there. 

We have organized a TNR spay & neuter clinic for feral cats in the Manchester neighborhood of Pittsburgh's Northside. ManchesterCatTrap 
We will target 30+ community cats who need to be fixed, trap them humanely, transport to the Fix'n Wag'n mobil clinic for veterinary care, then return to caretakers to be released to a healthier life that's less disruptive to the community. Friendly cats and kittens will be placed with reputable foster groups. 
Doing a "miniature mass trapping" gives us a better chance of controlling the neighborhood population of cats in one fell swoop. If we can get even slightly ahead of homeless kittens being born, it will be easier to TNVR new cats who find their way or are abandoned in our community. 
One female cat averages six kittens each year starting as young as six months. Male cats sire countless kittens. If we can spay 20 females and 10 males, we'll reduce the birth of unwanted kittens by about 120-150 this year alone. 
We will also work with colony caretakers to make sure the cats are properly fed and have shelters during bad weather. Together these assure the cats remain good neighbors who still hunt, but aren't desperately looking for food in your trash cans or shelter in your yard. It also reduces the disruption of mating behavior. 
These may not be your cats, but they are part of your community. 
We want to give back to Manchester pet lovers by distributing dog and cat food to any neighbor who signs up.  We will use a preregistration process to prioritize Manchester residents and have volunteers deliver the food. 
The basic TNRV is $70.  The next tier up that includes testing for FIV/FLV, a microchip, and other vaccinations is an additional $50 so $120 total. 

So we need to raise $2100 to provide free TNVR for 30 cats and we'd like to raise $3500 to TNVR 50 cats. We will prioritize cats from Manchester. Any extra spots will be shared with other Northside communities and rescue groups.  We also need to pay for some basic supplies such as printing, water for the volunteers, etc. 
We know this is a big request. Truly any amount helps, from $5 to $50 or more. If seven neighbors chipped in $10 each, they can take care of the one cat that visits their backyard. Residents of a duplex can chip $50 each to fix the cat in their yard. We have volunteers who will help you trap your cat if you like. 
We are seeking sponsorships, but it helps to show 25 or 45 neighbors support the idea with a donation. 
Any funds not used will be applied to future Manchester cats getting TNVRd at Fix'n Wag'n. this 

Important update - we have combined this fundraiser with the Dr. John Ruffing Pet Food Distribution Projects fundraiser. Dr John Ruffing was a beloved veterinarian and personal friend who passed too young at age 41 in November 2007. These food distribution project has been created with his family's blessing and encouragement. Our first distribution will take place at this TNVR event and will prioritize pet owners in Manchester and the Northside. Future efforts will include our feral cat colony pet food distribution. 

Donations of actual pet food can be sent to Mr. Sign 1316 Western Avenue Pittsburgh PA 15233 [phone redacted]. Shipments are fine and drop-offs can be scheduled by contacting them. 

Wish list is at 


  • Keerstan McGinley
    • $25 
    • 3 yrs
  • Kirkley Beal
    • $500 
    • 3 yrs
  • Erin Martier
    • $50 
    • 3 yrs
  • Laurie MacNamara
    • $25 
    • 3 yrs
  • Joyce Mathai
    • $300 
    • 3 yrs


Sue Kerr
Pittsburgh, PA

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