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Ongoing Health Care
We know that you want to give the best care possible for your outdoor cats through Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), and supplying food and shelter. To make sure the cats you care for are living the happiest, healthiest lives possible, you should also provide ongoing health care. This means carefully keeping track of the cats in your colony, their health, who still needs to be neutered, and keeping an eye out for new cats that may join who need to be trapped and neutered.
When keeping an eye on the health of outdoor cats, look for any kitties who may look a little beat up or rough around the edges. This includes changes in behavior, eating habits, dull eyes or coats, discharge from noses or eyes, weight loss, fur loss, changes in their gait, and listlessness.
Make sure to talk to your veterinarian (who has experience with community cats) for how to handle any health issues that might come up. If a problem does occur, talk to your veterinarian first and describe the symptoms, and then the two of you can decide if the cat needs to be trapped and examined.
There are also preventative measures you can take to keep the cats safe, like asking your veterinarian for deworming medicine and antibiotics so you can easily care for minor health issues that may come up. And it’s always useful to have a financial plan in place in case something arises. You can also request a list of Feral Friends in your area for help, like finding a low-cost clinic.