Jackie Dale-TheCatMother/Cat Trapper: Take These Cats Please

Mar 30, 2024 | 2024 Articles, Animal Rescue Adventures, Jackie Dale, Pets

by Jackie Dale

Neuter Day

The past month has been a literal “catnado” of cats. Just since my last column I have sent 30 cats to rescue and helped fix over 50 cats. The bulk of those were TNR projects but some were private pets. I help people get appointments and navigate the Cat House on the Kings new voucher system. It is pretty simple but not everyone is computer savvy so I help them get the vouchers, make the appointments and often I must assist with transporting the cat as well.

They Always Just Want Them Gone
One of my TNR projects was at a large senior apartment complex in a nearby town. The residents contacted me and once I cleared it with the management, I started trapping. Bear in mind that this location was 22 miles from my home, each way. Each trapping consists of a minimum of six trips to the location. There was no money to pay for this project, I knew the residents had no money and of course, management wasn’t wanting to pay. Typical “fix my problem and do it for free” kind of attitude that is so prevalent these days. Trapping was difficult due to the fact that most of the cats were trapped on the roof. Management decided that it would be smart to cut the branch off the tree that the cats used to access the roof. Real smart decision Einstein, cutting the branch while the cats were still on the roof! Now trapped up there, the residents were throwing food up there and somehow, bowls of water.

Apartment TNR

So, fast forward past the six cats I have already trapped. I receive a call from one of the residents that the management had decided to end the TNR. They had decided to trap all the cats and take them to a dairy owned by a relative of one of the residents. I called the manager and they confirmed the plan. I told them I was angry and upset, that I had wasted hours of time, money and gas on them and for what? They don’t care; they simply want the cats gone. Well, good luck with that. As an experienced trapper, I found this project difficult as most of the cats were on the roof, thus inaccessible. When I arrived to pick up a trap I had left there, a resident told me that the manager had obtained a trap and had trapped one of the cats I had already fixed. They had left the trap in the bushes for hours and I didn’t know if they had an immediate plan for this cat or what they had in mind, if anything. So I took it. I paid for it, so I figured it was mine. I will return their trap of course. Eventually.

Mom and babies

If Only Everyone Fixed Their Cats
I had several spay/aborts and as distasteful as that is, there are usually no other viable options. If people would fix their cats, stuff like this wouldn’t have to happen. One of these cats had her water break on the way to her appointment so I brought her back home. Two days later, still no kittens so I rushed her to the vet. All the kittens had died in utero. Had this cat not been brought to me, her outcome would have been vastly different. Another cat turned out not to be pregnant at all, but in fact had a gigantic ovarian tumor. A third cat, that we didn’t know was pregnant, was anesthetized. As she was removed from the carrier, a kitten was discovered underneath her. That mom kitty and her one white kitten are now at my place. The very next day, I got a call from an ACO in a town 45 minutes away. They wanted me to take three newborn kittens. Fortunately, my nursing mommy had full milk bags so I said “yes”. I had to leave and so I had my son intake the cats. They turned out to be FOUR kittens AND the mother in a trap. Mommy kitty readily accepted the newcomers. These kittens will grow up friendly and healthy. They will never know the horrors of life on the streets.


One cat “enjoyed” freedom for a whole month. The cat was brought to me for spay by a friend of the owner. The carrier that the cat arrived in had seen better days. As I carried the cat towards the building, the bottom suddenly dropped out and the cat ran off. The cat did not want to come to us and refused to go into the traps we set. Finally, after many attempts, the cat was ultimately captured. After being spayed, the cat came to TheCatMother Inn where ironically, the cat became super friendly and was quickly shipped off to rescue!

TNR ginger

You Can’t Fix Stupid
There is one undeniable fact in the world of animal rescue (aside from that is, the unbelievable drama), and that is…you will have to deal with some really stupid people. One such person was commenting on a post about people feeding cats behind some businesses. She had the usual misconception, which is that the cats were there because people were feeding them. I politely said, “No, the cats were there, kind people noticed and began to feed them”. Well, this woman person began to rake me over the coals, repeatedly calling me the most vulgar word you can call a woman. She called me every name in the book, stalked my Facebook page, insulted my appearance, and questioned my mental stability. All because I had the audacity to correct a misconception? This lady could certainly benefit from some anger management classes.

Then there was the woman who questioned how we could spay cats without their consent. She felt that the cats should have “a voice” in what happened to them. She was joined by a man who wanted to know why we were messing with the reproductive tracts of animals in the first place. There is simply no arguing with people like this. It would be a colossal waste of my time and energy to fight a battle of wits with an unarmed opponent.

Transport day

The pièce de résistance had to be a guy whose family I was helping fix multiple cats. So far I had fixed nine cats and he arrived to pick up the most recent spays. We were discussing how many more cats there were to be fixed and if they would need to be trapped. He said “yes” they would need to be trapped but the ones he couldn’t catch, he would just shoot them. I just stared at him for a moment before saying, “Why would you say that to me? Even if it’s true, did you think you would make some points by telling me this? Because I assure you, you did not! I told him “this conversation is over” and walked away. I cannot fathom why someone would say something like this to someone who rescues cats. This is a perfect example of “THINK before you Speak!”

DONATIONS ARE ALWAYS GREATLY APPRECIATED!! I can’t operate without them. If you would like to make a donation, I have a PayPal account jackiejoy@hotmail[dot]com You can also support the post office and send donations/supplies via good old snail mail to Jackie Dale P O Box 1859, Reedley, CA 93654.

You can check out more animal rescue articles in KRL’s animal rescue section! Join our Pets Facebook group to help keep up with our pet articles.

Jackie Dale is a freelance writer who lives in Reedley with her husband of 27 years, Frank, and their 2 children. A former ballerina, Jackie now teaches yoga and fitness classes privately and at local area gyms in addition to her cat related duties.


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