Founded in 2006 by Carol Manos, Carol’s Ferals originally opened when Manos started trapping feral cats outside of the Burger King in Cutlerville. From there, she went on to do other small trapping missions of her own until she exceeded the ability to do it alone. In 2007, she began teaching people how to do the trapping themselves.
This process, called TNR or trap, neuter, return, is the only effective and humane method in controlling community cats, i.e. the cats that live under your porch and have a litter of kittens every spring. Some of these cats are wild (feral) while others are friendly strays.
“Cats are brought to Carol’s Ferals during weekly TNR intake hours and handled by trained staff,” Manos said. “The next morning, the cat wakes and is spayed or neutered and observed by the veterinarian staff to ensure they are waking with no complication. They are picked up by caregivers the following evening and returned that same night.”
This program has helped immensely with the cat population in West Michigan. In 2016, 984 cats were fixed, 158 were adopted to forever homes and 28 relocated to safe barn homes. With the partnership with Happy Cat Café (see related story), the goal is to have even more adoptions this year.
“Our adoption team together with our health director choose cats to go to the café based on personality,” Manos said. “We want to put fun-loving, highly people-loving cats in the café. We are starting with six at a time, but when the café opens, we will probably bump that up to eight.”
Learn more, adopt or sponsor a pet and more via Carol's Ferals website.