From fundraising events in Iceland to low-cost spay and neuter clinics in Central America, individuals and groups from all around the world are taking part in Alley Cat Allies’ inaugural Global Cat Day® on October 16.
On this day of action and throughout the month, people everywhere will stand up for cats in their communities. Organizations are hosting events, and individuals are signing our pledge to support compassionate policies that protect cats. By the end of this year, Alley Cat Allies is aiming to collect 100,000 signed pledges to strengthen the movement to save and protect all cats.
“Global Cat Day is a turning point in helping more people to understand these essential facts about the cats living outside in their communities,” says Alley Cat Allies President and Founder Becky Robinson.
Global Cat Day replaces National Feral Cat Day, the event Alley Cat Allies has held annually since 2001. International participation in National Feral Cat Day grew every year, so Alley Cat Allies realized it was time for the event to reflect the scope of our work. Cat advocates around the world look to us for information and expertise, and many of them are taking part in Global Cat Day.
On October 16, the Icelandic Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) and cat rescue organization Villikettir (which means “feral cat”) is kicking off its crowdfunding effort to raise 24,500 euro (or $28,908 in U.S. dollars) to buy a shelter to house adoptable cats and feral cats on their way to be spayed and neutered. The group currently relies on foster homes, and volunteers’ own homes, to house and care for hundreds of cats each year. This group says that Alley Cat Allies’ resources have been helpful to educate people in Iceland about TNR, since many residents weren’t aware of this effective and humane approach to community cats.
Halfway around the world in Panama, our Feral Friends Network member Spay Panama will host a spay and neuter clinic, similar to a mobile animal sterilization clinic, as part of Global Cat Day. The goal: trapping and treating 100 cats. This group has done TNR for years in Panama City’s Casco Viejo, or historic district, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site and home to thousands of cats. The group has neutered 4,000 cats in the area, but there are still more to go.
Heading north, Coco’s Animal Welfare, our Feral Friend in Mexico, conducts TNR and offers low-cost spay and neuter in Playa del Carmen and Riviera Maya. On October 17, the group is offering free spay and neuter surgeries for feral and rescue cats, and low-cost surgeries for owned cats.
“It’s very exciting that interest in advocating for outdoor cats is coming from so many corners of the globe, because it’s more evidence that this is now truly an international movement,” Robinson says.
Around the United States, dedicated groups are hosting events including spay and neuter clinics, free TNR workshops, cat food drives, and more.
In Nashville, TN, the Pet Community Center is giving away free styrofoam winter shelters for community cats as colder weather approaches.
Advocates in Blooming Prairie, MN, are hosting a low-cost monthlong spay and neuter clinic, which also includes vaccinations.
In Lafayette, LA, the Acadiana Humane Society is collecting cat food donations through early November as part of Global Cat Day. The group is also accepting donations to purchase cat food and litter, and to pay for spay and neuter procedures for cats.
We hope you will participate in Global Cat Day! Sign our pledge, purchase educational materials, and attend or host an event! Together, we can make a lasting impact for cats worldwide.