Karen Little and her husband founded the nonprofit Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) group Alley Cat Advocates in 1999. Based in Louisville, Kentucky, the group has altered over 50,000 community cats and has worked to transform the culture of care provided community cats in the region. Karen was instrumental in helping pass an ordinance change in 2012 that propelled the implementation of an extremely successful Return-to-Field program, moving the city’s Save Rate for cats to over 95% since 2017. Alley Cat Advocates holds the citywide contract for Trap-Neuter-Return and all related community cat issues in Jefferson County, Kentucky.
Karen is regularly asked to speak at conferences and workshops on community cat issues and has served as mentor to many individuals and organizations. She served for two years on a team working under the auspices of PetSmart Charities Foundation to provide grant funding to small, often start-up, TNR groups across the country and has provided input on community cat issues to many national organizations. She is co-author of the “Return-to-Field Handbook”, in collaboration with the Humane Society of the United States, Neighborhood Cats, and Alley Cat Advocates.
In 2020, Alley Cat Advocates opened a Community Cat Complex on the campus of Louisville Metro Animal Services, further solidifying their partnership with the municipal shelter. The unique facility houses a spay/neuter clinic, medical rehabilitation space for those cats needing a bit of extra care before returning home, and a special needs/hospice foster room, complete with enormous screened porch called a “catio”, for the small number of cats unsuited for life outside.