Volunteers Planning to Round Up Feral Cats in Seminole Heights

Possible volunteers say they would like to partner with an organization like the SPCA to get the cats off of the streets.

If you've spotted feral cats in Seminole Heights, you may not be the only one.

In an effort to rid the community of the sometimes pesky feral cats, volunteers are debating whether to start rounding up the cats in Seminole Heights. Some residents began discussing their plan in the comments area of the website seminoleheightsblog.com. Most of the comments are posted by anonymous users.

Those comments suggest that volunteers are looking to remove cats without a notched ear - which indicates it has been spayed and neutered - with plans to trap and take them to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, according to the "Official Unofficial Seminole Heights Blog."

A lot of cats are located in areas such as that between Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. and Hillsborough Ave., according to the blog, prompting volunteers to comment about plans to begin working in that area.

Commenters suggest that anyone with an outdoor cat should make sure it has tags or its ears notched, the blog said, or else it could be at risk of being trapped or removed.

For more information, read the blog here.

What do you think about the effort to trap feral cats? Do you think non-feral cats are at risk of being taken away? Tell us in the comments.

Sherry Zips February 05, 2013 at 12:51 PM
I had my stray cat neutered at the ACT facility. Unfortunately they forgot to notch his ear. He has been neutered, chipped and has had all his shots. My concern is that they will "round up" this cat that I take care of. How many other cats did they forget to notch and now he could be trapped unnecessarily. I don't like this idea at all.
Kate February 05, 2013 at 02:50 PM
I have an indoor kitty that "escapes" a couple times a year. She doesn't wear a collar or have a notch in her ear. I worry that she'll decide to run out the door when they are trapping the feral cats. We also have several very nice outdoor kitties in our neighborhood. I'm not sure who some of them belong to, but they often sunbathe in my back yard. They aren't aggressive and they aren't a problem. They also don't wear collars or have ear notches. There is no reason for them to be trapped and taken away from their home either. Many of these animals are legitimate residents of the area and shouldn't be removed. I don't like the idea of other people coming into my neighborhood and deciding which animals should go and which should stay.
Carolyn Simpson February 05, 2013 at 04:05 PM
I agree with Kate
Christopher Nank February 05, 2013 at 05:26 PM
This can't happen soon enough. These cats are all over my yard.
CK February 05, 2013 at 08:20 PM
This is a TERRIBLE idea, not to mention ineffective. I don't know who these possible volunteers are, but they need to familiarize themselves with Trap Neuter Return programs (TNR) >> http://www.alleycat.org/page.aspx?pid=667 Organizations like Alley Cat Allies have loads of information on how this method is effective at actually decreasing cat populations. Humane Society of Tampa Bay also has experience with this. Seminole Heights is a community that has always had "community cats" in it. This is the flavor of the neighborhood.
Christine February 05, 2013 at 08:40 PM
Removing neighborhood/feral/community cats just leaves a space in the cat territory which will quickly be filled by more cats from another neighborhood. Nature abhors a vacuum. The better idea is to trap and neuter and return the cats to the same location so that they don't continue to breed. We have so many rats in the area--you want to talk about nuisance! I hate to think of what would happen if we went without a good population of cats for a few months while we wait for cats from another neighborhood to move in. I would encourage people to put collars on the neighborhood cats you have hanging out in your yard as well as your cat(s). Make sure they are spade/neutered. If we can take a little bit of responsibility for cats that aren't ours, their lives will be better and our neighborhood will continue to benefit from their presence. For those of you who hate cats, there are repellents on the market--this one in particular is easy and effective: http://www.amazon.com/Contech-CatStop-Ultrasonic-Outdoor-Deterrent/dp/B0001A9TE2.
kelly holladay February 05, 2013 at 11:21 PM
Get rid of the drug dealers and leave our cats alone!!
Matt Bailey February 06, 2013 at 02:38 PM
Speaking as some one who takes care of 2 feral cats that have been fixed & had their ears clipped I understand how we become attached & consider them part of the neighborhood. However with that being said we have an ever growing cat problem that isn't going to fix it's self. The other night my wife & I walked over to Cappy's for dinner & counted almost 30 cats along our 4 block walk. That is utterly ridiculous & out of control in my opinion. Something has to be done & I'm happy to see that we are starting to have a discussion about it.
Melissa Bailey February 06, 2013 at 03:16 PM
Kate, as an animal lover I completely understand how you feel. My suggestion to you would be to catch your backyard kitties and have they spayed, they will clip their ears and you can release them back in Seminole heights. This will prevent them from reproducing as well as anyone else taking them from their home. Our wonderful neighbor did this to a couple resident cats on our block and we couldn't be happier. I have two outdoor stray cats that I love and would be devastated if anything happened to them. But they are both neutered and have their ears clipped. I think the moral of this article is control, and right now the cat population is out of it. And as an animal lover, I find it inhumane to have all these baby kitties running around that we can't possibly all take care of. I don't believe that the author of this article is wanting to hurt any of our furry friends, I think they just want to manage the population of them. And if we are going to love them as our pets, then they deserve the care we would give our in home pets such as being neutered. On that note, I would love to help anyone interested in getting their stray cat neutered. And as for any kittens, I would love to rescue them and place them in a non kill shelter to be adopted so they can get the proper care and love that they deserve.
Melissa Bailey February 06, 2013 at 03:18 PM
Great comment Christine!
Leslie Inman February 07, 2013 at 03:18 PM
I don't know if ACT forgot or they just don't notch there. I know several other people that have taken cats there and they didn't notch the ears either. I'm not in favor of this vigilante brigade going around. Why of all places would they try to pair with SPCA instead of the well established reputable program at HSTB?
Leslie Inman February 07, 2013 at 03:19 PM
Neither do I! Everyone knows that Seminole Heights is cat friendly neighborhood so I'm surprised people that are complaining even moved into the area. It's always been this way.
Leslie Inman February 07, 2013 at 03:20 PM
Me too!
Leslie Inman February 07, 2013 at 03:23 PM
Well said!
Leslie Inman February 07, 2013 at 03:23 PM
Don't forget the hookers too!
Leslie Harris February 08, 2013 at 01:40 PM
ACT puts a tatoo green line on belly of all spays... unless you take cats in (in traps) on feral day. Your cat is ABSOLUTELY in danger of being picked up. Likely these cats will be given a short grace period to be reclaimed, and then euthanized. I believe this is an effort to head off "kitten season" this spring. Hope my suggestions to post signs in the area before the round up are heeded. Spread the word!
Erin Bentley February 08, 2013 at 01:41 PM
You can't just go and take cats from people's yards, regardless of if they are feral or not. If this project happens, the home owners need to be notified. Spay and neuter is a great thing and it should happen to keep mass amount of cats from living in a populated area and from the harm of being hit by a car or something. But simply deciding to take every cat that can be trapped from people's home without letting them know is ridiculous. After the cat is spayed or neutered and cared for while recovering, they need to go back to exactly the home they came from. I care for several cats outside and I don't want anyone taking them from me. To whoever said they would place kittens in a no kill shelter, please tell me which no kill shelter has room for kittens because I don't believe they exist with so many people dumping their family pets.
Leslie Harris February 08, 2013 at 01:47 PM
Kate, send me an email, and I can give you some info on getting your backyard kitties done... possibly through a grant. (she makes waves @ ms n .c om)
Leslie Harris February 08, 2013 at 01:52 PM
Don't point a finger, Lend a hand. Seminole Heights is one of the last, real communities and what a treasure to have neighbors who have the ability to work together interdependently!
Sandy Freeman February 08, 2013 at 03:15 PM
If your owned cats are microchipped or tagged (which is required by law in Hillsborough County if they are outside), I am sure your cat will be fine. They stated that they will be scanning for microchips after trapping.
KC February 11, 2013 at 03:56 PM
Our cats stay in our yard and they have microchips. They are all fixed. I can understand fixing them and releasing them, however, this needs to be done with the help of a professional group who does this regularly. I have personal experience working with animals, and feral cats can bite and scratch. I love cats, and so I guess I worry about the way this would be done. Why don't you invite Alleycats or Humane Society to garden center and have meeting, so people know what is happening.
christine February 16, 2013 at 09:45 PM
this is illegal. not all organizations clip ears on spaying. i called the spca and they told me they would notparticipate in this effort. this is catnapping. christine
mary contrary May 28, 2013 at 09:39 PM
Amen Kate


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