Tag Archives: Spay Worcester

Human Kind – be both!


By Dorrie Maynard

Here’s a feel-good story for you: It’s about a woman who helped save and trap two of the luckiest feral kittens in Worcester!

The woman’s name is Melissa and the two (twin?)sister kittens are named Daisy and Delilah. They are completely black and precious!

Daisy and Delilah!

They were born outside, in the elements, and now live the life of kitty royalty. Melissa had owned a cat years ago, but for a very long time, after it died, she never got another one until she saw these kittens, homeless and helpless, in her backyard.

She got in touch with me. We set live traps in her yard. There were originally four kitties: one must have been taken in by someone else, and one of the others had died right before Melissa was going to take her in. Melissa was devastated but determined to save the two remaining kittens.

Like all feral kittens – kittens born to feral cats and are unused to human contact – these babies were afraid of humans and being inside Melussa’s home at first. But Melissa showed them love, fed and cared for them. They came around!


Now they are HOME! They have complete run of Melissa’s house, every cat toy, cat comfort, the best of food and cat parents who couldn’t be happier with their cuties.

Not only did Melissa and her husband take in these two kittens, they helped me to trap and transport eight other cats in the neighborhood to be spayed/neutered and vaccinated and then to be re-released in the neighborhood, where they could be as healthy as possible and not reproduce, ending the cylce of that feral colony.

Feral cats usually live two or three years in outdoors, alone, exposed to whatever is out there: cars, poison, lack of food, sub zero temps – and die horrific deaths! When the cats came back after being “fixed” by the vet, Melissa hated the thought that they would be put out right away, so she made plans to keep them in her basement for a few days. That turned into a complete night-
mare. The cats (wild) were so freaked out they started jumping and breaking things. She said she could hear glass crashing down there! She and her husband went down to clean up the glass because they were afraid the cats would cut themselves and decided to let them run back outdoors through the bulk head door. They thought they had all run out until Melissa went downstairs a few days later and realized there was at least one or two cats still down there.

They let the bulk head open again, and finally the remaining cats made their way out. Melissa and husband Dan made a very lovely feral cat house for the cats – shelter, warmth – but the cats
have not used it yet, according to a neighbor who feeds them and allows they to hang out on their porch.

Hopefully, this colony of cats will figure it out and start to use it – especially now that the weather has turned bitter.

Melissa has already taken her two kittens to a wellness visit and has plans to have them spayed this month.


Daisy and Delilah hit the jackpot when they were welcomed into Melissa and Dan’s home and life!

Sometimes it does take a village to make good things happen! This couple and their neighbors cared enough to have the stray/wild cats in their neighborhood fixed so they will stop breeding. They set up housing for them and are committed to keeping the cats fed and watered.

Thanks to the Worcester Animal Rescue League (WARL) – they first got the phone call about the cats and then handed the kitty project over to Spay Worcester. Spay Worcester then asked for a volunteer to spearhead the round up.

And so the story goes…

District 4 City Councilor Barbara Haller supports Spay Worcester

By Karen Powers, chairperson, Spay Worcester

The Spay Worcester Task Force is a coalition of Worcester citizens, Tufts Veterinary School and the Massachusetts Animal Coalition. The purpose of Spay Worcester is to humanly reduce the population of free roaming cats in a specific area of area of Worcester through a Spay/Neuter program and through public education. Due to a grant from Petsmart Charities and the tireless work of many volunteers this program is done at no cost to the people of Worcester.

When we first approached Barbara Haller about the possibility of starting a program in the Main South area she listened carefully, asked questions and then said “What can I do to help?” She pointed out that this type of program is beneficial not only to the cats but to their human families and caregivers.

She saw the value of the program in helping people with limited resources having their cats spayed, neutered and given rabies vaccines. This prevents the arrival of unwanted kittens and male cat fighting and marking, all behaviors that can result in people abandoning their pets. By assisting families with Spays & Neuters children learn that vetting is part of responsible pet ownership and breaking the cycle of disposable pets.

Main South is one of the most densely populated neighborhoods in the city with a large population of economically challenged residents. It also has significant areas of vacant land and abandoned buildings that can become a shelter for these abandoned cats.

Once Barbara saw our commitment and the value of this program she became a staunch advocate for Spay Worcester. She introduced us to Mayor O’Brien (who became another great supporter). She introduced us to the people at the Main South CDC as well as Clark University, University Park Campus School, Worcester Public schools and several neighborhood groups.

Barbara introduced us to a great number of neighborhood residents and to people who were already feeding abandoned neighborhood cats. It is these people who are our major allies in helping these homeless cats. They identify the colonies and assist in trapping the cats and in watching the cats after they are returned. They also let us know when new cats arrive in the colony.

We are well on our way to our 2 year goal of Spaying and Neutering 1000 cats and a large amount of our success we owe to Councilor Baarbra Haller and her commitment to all that make up a community (including the fury four legged ones).

June is Adopt-a-Cat month! … And a letter from a friend!

By Deb Young
An estimated 37 million households include at least one cat -is yours one of them?

Since June has been set aside as “Adopt a cat” month, this is an ideal time for folks who adore felines to consider opening their hearts and homes and take in a kitty or two, showering them with the love and
affection they so deeply deserve.

Cat adoption not only improves the lives of cats, but also can improve the lives of new owners, providing a faithful & lifelong companion.

Many local shelters have a wide variety of adorable kittens and older cats that can win the heart of anyone who is passionate about them.
Finding loving homes is a challenge in any season, and never more so during the spring and summer. We salute shelters and rescue groups for your tireless efforts on behalf of all cats and kittens.

“There are few things in life more heartwarming than to be welcomed home by a cat “~ Tay Hohoff

For more information on available cats & kittens for adoption, please contact your local shelter or rescue. You can also contact me – Deb @ Autocats2010@yahoo.com Continue reading June is Adopt-a-Cat month! … And a letter from a friend!

Cat women! Showing the love to Worcester’s feral cats!

By DebYoung

My name is Deborah Young. I am the caretaker of a feral cat colony in Worcester and have been for many years.This is a managed colony, which means all cats have been spay/neutered, they have had their rabies shots and ears tipped (ear tipping identifies feral cats that have been sterilized )This colony started with cats who are that of second, third or latergeneration offspring of unaltered strays and free roaming companion cats.

When they live together, the group is called a “colony.” They are born outdoors and usually are hidden by their mothers; they have little or no human contact in the formative months. As they are often nocturnal, you may not be aware of their presence. And when their numbers are kept in check, feral cats can live reasonably long,healthy, dignified lives. A properly managed colony can actually add to the urban fabric, the rodent population in controlled, sterilized cats will no longer fight to mate which means no more puncture wounds from bites to spread feline leukemia and feline immunodeficiency virus, no more yowling or spraying, and no more litters of kittens. Continue reading Cat women! Showing the love to Worcester’s feral cats!