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Feral Cat Program Supported in Anne Arundel County, MD

Paws Up!
January 10, 2018

To Anne Arundel County Maryland Executive, Steven Schuh for saying “yes” to Bill 96-17 that will help reduce the number of feral cats in Anne Arundel County.

When born or abandoned as strays, cats will often form colonies around a foot source. Over time, the colony grows. Many of the cats  in these colonies are feral, which means many will be fearful of humans, and therefore ineligible for conventional pet adoption. Left unchecked, the colonies grow as the cats reproduce. Unvaccinated cats in the colony have an increased risk of contracting fatal viruses, such as feline immunodeficiency virus and feline leukemia virus. These cat colonies can be unintentionally created when well-meaning individuals feed stray and feral cats without having the cats spayed and neutered. One humane solution is to implement a Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) program, in which cats are captured, spayed/neutered and vaccinated, and then released. Usually a caretaker is designated to provide basic shelter and food, and capture any newcomers. TNR programs may be implemented by the county or non-profit organizations.

According to a recent news article, Anne Arundel County lawmakers have passed Bill 96-17. This bill will help combat the booming number of cat communities in Anne Arundel County, Maryland.  It defines a community cat as “an unowned, free roaming cat, 12 weeks of age or older who is cared for by one or more persons residing or working in the immediate area who are known or unknown.”  Bill 96-17 will also aid the caretakers of these communities by providing invaluable access to vaccines and spay and neuter surgeries.  These services will be funded by grants or private donation. The process of trap, neuter, return is an invaluable practice to help humanely reduce the number of stray cats in a community.

Learn more about managing feral cat colonies through our trap, neuter, return brochure.  

Take Action:  Anne Arundel County residents, thank County Executive Steven R. Schuh for passing this bill to humanely control feral cat populations.  (Email him at

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3 responses to “Feral Cat Program Supported in Anne Arundel County, MD”

  1. Shannon ricci says:

    Thank u for caring for the unwanted pets out there it’s way to many and getting them fix helps a lot don’t protect them for being out side in harms way but it helps not make more baby’s..I wish I could buy a farm n put all the unwanted pets there ?

  2. Judy M says:

    I have taken in a small black cat with a tipped ear and extra toes on her front paws that appeared on Christmas Eve at a front door near woods in Padena MD. She is affectionate with all humans and uses a litter box and definitely does not want to leave the protection of the indoors, so I would not consider her feral. Do you keep records of the cats that have been spayed on this program? I’d like to keep her and it would help to know if she’s been spayed.

    • nhesadmin says:

      Hi Judy,

      Thank you for your comment. Because it has been a year since this program has been implemented, we suggest to please contact your county council or local community cat programs to find out about the record-keeping process for their spayed cats. You can also contact your local veterinarian for help, as they may already know how to tell if she has been spayed or not. And thank you for opening your home to a stray animal! What a wonderful Christmas gift!

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