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Tools to Help More Cats

Looking for Rethinking the Cat slides?

The Humane Society of the United States

Managing Community Cats: A Guide for Municipal Leaders
A comprehensive guide to humane management of community cats at the community level. Available to purchase in print or free PDF download.

Supporting Community Cats Webinar Series
A conveniently packaged series of free webinars, co-sponsored by PetSmart Charities, covering a variety of topics including colony management, community level effectiveness and hot topics such as wildlife predation issues.

Cat Behavior Counselor Course
A self-paced cat behavior course geared towards shelter and rescue staff, and volunteers. Access information to help keep cats safe and happy in their homes.

Online Cat Answer Tool
Walk through common behavior issues and discover potential actions to help solve problems to keep cats happy in their homes.

Euthanasia Reference Manual (PDF 8.45MB)
When the difficult decision is made that euthanasia is the only option, it is critical to ensure it is performed as humanely as possible. This updated reference manual, available in print or free PDF download, is designed to be the definitive basic education tool for understanding the methods and techniques of performing humane euthanasia.

Rescue Central
Comprehensive resources for rescue organizations covering fundraising, organizational capacity, volunteer management and more.

Pets for Life Program
Access the Pets for Life toolkit, data report, videos and other resources to boost community outreach and engagement in underserved communities.

Organizations Helping Community Cats
Get to know your local community cat resources. If your organization helps community cats but is not yet listed on our map, please contact

The HSUS’ Position on Cats

For Community Cats, a Change Is Gonna Come Animal Sheltering magazine article
Veterinarian Kate Hurley knows the staggering toll of the euthanasia of healthy cats in shelters. It's evidence, she argues, that the current sheltering model isn't working for cats, and needs to be changed. Picking up and euthanizing healthy feral and unowned cats doesn't protect them, other pets, wildlife, or human health, nor does it help control feline overpopulation. But what should we be doing instead? Some shelters are starting to work on new approaches.

Rethinking the Cat Symposia slides 

Pets for Life (PDF 1.06MB)
The HSUS presenters discuss effective ways to engage and share information with the public about community cats and effectively resolve conflicts, and the role that ACOs, shelters, and rescue groups play in this mission.

Best Practices for Shelter Cats (PDF 4.20MB)
The HSUS Shelter Services team shares information on disease prevention, housing, customer service, capacity issues, enrichment and much more to ensure that cats being housed in your facility are receiving the best of care and staying healthy and happy.

Boosting Adoptions (PDF 3.63MB)
The HSUS presenters discuss the importance of open adoptions, marketing and thinking creatively, to help more cats find loving homes.

Persuading Municipal Officials (PDF 710KB)
PetSmart Charities' Bryan Kortis discusses the rationale behind TNR programs, and the most effective ways to advocate for humane projects- by focusing on the types of information that municipal officials will best respond to.

Community TNR (PDF 3.72MB)
PetSmart Charities' Bryan Kortis shares information on the current best practices for community cat management, including targeted TNR, return to field programs and grassroots engagement.

Cleveland Animal Protective League’s TNR Program (PDF 1.63MB)
Sharon Harvey discusses the Cleveland APL TNR program and community engagement model.

Keeping Cats in Homes (PDF 638KB)
The HSUS Pet Help Partners program presents on surrender prevention efforts and community support projects, including cat behavioral support and tenant advocacy. Keep more cats in homes and out of your facilities.

Looking Upstream – A multifaceted approach to helping more cats (PDF 505KB)
Presenters from the Animal Humane Society describe how they launched its "Bound for Home" initiative. The initiative was designed to significantly improve the lives of the felines coming into the shelter, reduce intake and decrease length of stay, cut euthanasia rates, and increase placement rates.

Managing Admission (PDF 1.65MB)
PetSmart Charities' Todd Kramer explores the principles of less-restrictive adoption screening, the best adoption process, and what the effects of a good adoption program are on the organization, the community, and the animals.

Opening Our Minds and Adoptions to Save More Lives (PDF 2.58MB)
Presenters from the Animal Humane Society describe how they launched its "Bound for Home" initiative. The initiative was designed to significantly improve the lives of the felines coming into the shelter, reduce intake and decrease length of stay, cut euthanasia rates, and increase placement rates.

Making It Work In Your Community
Organizations and agencies discuss the challenges and victories they have experienced, as well as lessons learned, in implementing TNR.
Asheville Humane Society, Asheville, NC (PDF 516KB)
Brunswick County Sheriff's Office, Supply, NC (PDF 1.30MB)
Citizens for Animal Protection, Houston, TX (PDF 988KB)
SPCA of Wake County, Raleigh, NC (PDF 432KB)
Wake County Animal Control, Raleigh, NC (PDF 349KB)

Rethinking the Cat Symposia Handouts

Feline Intake By Appointment (PDF 486KB)
SPCA Serving Erie County's quick guide for creating a feline waiting list for your organization.

New Paradigms for Shelters and Community Cats (PDF 343KB)
Drs. Kate Hurley and Julie Levy discuss a holistic approach to community cats that allows shelters to focus on positive, life-saving programs that account for the needs of pets, wildlife and people.

Petsmart Charities

Community TNR: Tactics and Tools
Book available for download and purchase.

Spay/Neuter Grants

Neighborhood Cats

Neighborhood Cats TNR Handbook 2nd edition

University of California at Davis Shelter Medicine Program

Cat Cage Modifications/Making PVC Portals

Recommendations for facility design and animal housing
Includes single and group cat housing.

Handy Dandy Group Housing Calculator for Cats

Cat Vaccination Information

URI Cost Calculator


Vaccination Decision Tree

Standard Operating Procedures template

Length of Stay resources

ASPCA’s Little Black Book of Adoption Promotion Ideas

ASPCA Meet the Adopters Workshop

Video: Tips on Communicating with Adopters

Report on Adoption Forum II (PDF 1.72MB)

Customer Service for Social Change presentation by Amy Mills

Maddie's Institute

Making the Case for a Paradigm Shift in Community Cat Management (webinars and resources):

Webinar Part 1:Making the Case for Community Cats Part One

Webinar Part 2:Making the Case for Community Cats Part Two

Feline Shelter Intake Reduction Program FAQs

Webcast: Shelter Crowd Control: Keeping Community Cats Out of Shelters

Video: Keeping Community Cats Out of Shelters

Microchip Resources

AAHA Universal Pet Microchip Lookup

Found Animals Microchip FAQ

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