Working to control the community cat population on Ocracoke Island

February 2018 Update

Post date: Feb 10, 2018 5:17:51 PM

Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!

As we move into 2018, Ocracats would like to express our thanks to all of you who have assisted in our efforts to provide food, medical care, and neutering/spaying for the island’s feral cat population.

· Many of you have donated money and food to help us in our efforts to feed and provide medical care to the colonies. In 2017 we added an online donation button for our Facebook page and on our website. Especially in the winter, when the restaurants are closed and we have a limited number of visitors, these funds are tremendously important to us.

· We also are members of the Amazon Smile program. When you select us as your charity, we receive a percentage of the money you spend on Amazon. It’s easy to sign up: just click on the link or search for Amazon Smile in your browser, and then find Ocra Cats (two words) on the list of charities and register. Then make your purchases through the Amazon Smile website: you pay nothing extra, and we automatically receive the money.

So what do we do with the money we receive? All of it goes directly to caring for the animals.

· We feed the ferals around the island and obtain medical care whenever one is sick or injured.

· Since 2010, when Ocracats rebooted, we have trapped and spayed/neutered 675 cats at our clinics. In addition, about another dozen each year have been trapped and fixed by veterinarians outside of clinics—males locally, whenever a veterinarian was on the island for appointments, females at veterinarians’ offices in Nags Head or Kitty Hawk (about three hours from here each way).

· Each year, at least a dozen kittens who end up motherless and homeless for whatever reasons are brought to our attention and enter foster care with an Ocracat volunteer. We now maintain a kitten adoption registry on our website and contact registrants when kittens are available for adoption. We can never predict when kittens will need our help, and we appreciate having folks to contact when the need arises. Since the adoption registry began about three years ago, we have found homes for dozens of kittens. We did not deliberately set out to run an adoption program, but it is now a wonderful option in our efforts to help the island kitties.

We are incredibly grateful that Dr. Laura Trent has now made the island her home and is serving as Ocracoke’s mobile vet. Many medical emergencies that had previously required transportation off the island can now be treated locally—a godsend for the local volunteers who used to have to deal with the emergency calls and/or transport injured or sick ferals. Did I say how much we love Dr. Laura?

Although our neuter/spay program has greatly reduced the breeding population, Ocracoke still has many ferals, and kitties will remain an integral part of island life. And that means that we will continue to work to keep them fed and healthy. Thank you so much for your support! You are an important part of our success!

When you’re visiting the island, stop by Mermaid’s Folly on Irvin Garrish Highway in the center of the village and check out our T-shirts, notecards, and calendars. All purchases support our efforts. We also have a table at the annual Ocrafolk Festival and donation jars at many of our island shops.

Hope to see you in 2018!