Practicing and promoting Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) in DuPage County, Illinois

We're a 501c3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting and practicing Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) in DuPage County, Illinois. We believe that TNR is the only effective, humane and long-term solution to the problem of cat overpopulation.
The Feral Fixers e-Newsletter - Issue #60 - November, 2015
In This Issue
Letter from the President
Don't forget to follow us on Facebook!
New York tries to get serious about TNR
Frosty Claws!
Feral Fixers Wish List
Thank you P.A.W.S. !!!
Want to Help?
Feral Cat Shelter Options
Fosters are needed now!
Feral Cats Guard Chicago Brewery
Celebrate 5500 T-Shirts now on Sale!
The Dancing Cat Studio
Shop on ebay - Help Feral Fixers!
How many cats? - 8,286!!
Shop on Amazon - Help Feral Fixers!
Donate to Feral Fixers
Event Calendar
Shop for Feral Fixers
Visit us on the Web
What is Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR)?
About us
Dear Friend,

2015 is winding down - it's already November, can you believe it ?!?

It's been a very busy few months since our last Newsletter and the content of this issue reflects that.  In addition to the most recent Letter from the President and other articles that you normally see (Our Wish List, our ongoing need for Fosters, ways you can help Feral Fixers, our current Event Calendar, etc.), there are also articles about the city of New York upping the ante with TNR, more help from our friends at P.A.W.S., a unique and 'green' solution to rodent problems at a Chicago brewery and the "Dancing Cat" studio.

Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) has gone mainstream and Feral Fixers has played its part in making that happen.  This is our sixth year in a row that we have spayed/neutered more than 1,000 cats and that is a mark we are very proud of.  We've said this before and we'll say it again - WE COULDN'T DO WHAT WE DO WITHOUT YOU - THANK YOU!

Thank you for reading and thank you for support of Feral Fixers!


Feral Fixers
Letter from the President

Remington's story

We've posted stories about how your donations make such a difference in the day-to-day lives of the ferals & strays that come to us with injuries and illness. Almost daily I make choices about what care, what extent of care we can provide. Our latest is Remington. We've had Remington in foster for a couple months. He came from a colony that is clearly inbred and they have health issues. Remington had upper respiratory symptoms that required successive antibiotics and only keeping him on a maintenance dose of clindamycin kept the URI at bay, while a rattling sound became more and more evident in his breathing. It seemed likely that there was a growth or polyp causing the rattle. His visit to Veterinary Specialty Center in Buffalo Grove resulted in a clear diagnosis. They are wonderful professionals, all in one location and worth the trip.

It is definitely a nasopharyngeal polyp. They could feel it for themselves. There were two options, go in and yank it out - often don't get the whole root and the polyp is back in a year or two (think the movie Total Recall where they grab that ball out of the nose - Ughhhh!) and still need the surgery. Or surgery now, where they go in thru the ear and get the whole polyp, sure for certain. We are definitely doing the second option as we want Remington to have the longest, most uncomplicated life possible. This will not be cheap, while we get a Rescue discount, the quote is for over $3,200.

There is no one else to help Remington but you. Through your donations, he will get this surgery and life for Remington will improve almost immediately and long into his future.

Please help us, help them!

UPDATE - Remington's surgery was successful and the video now shows him before surgery and after surgery.  We still need help in defraying the medical costs we incurred on his behalf - please DONATE to help us help them - thank you!


It's all about the numbers. Numbers are how we evaluate, benchmark progress, compare to others.

When we first started Feral Fixers, I was convinced that 3,000 spay/neuters was the goal. Then we achieved 5,000 and I was certain the end was in sight. By the end of October we will surpass 8,200 spay/neuters. M A Y B E, when we pass 10,000 things will slow down?

If you follow us on Facebook, we recently encountered a colony of 70+ cats. Yes, there were multiple businesses involved, but it was essentially one colony. Largest situation I had ever encountered other than a hoarder that had over 100. The hoarder was easier in one way - you knew when you had the last cat - you had opened ever door, cupboard, looked in every duct, it was cat-free. Outside colonies - individuals may only show up occasionally depending on many variables but still have impact on the colony, that one teenage kitten might wander off and start production in the spring all over again. We know that once we have a location on our radar, its there forever. We may finally find the source of those new cats that have shown up in a 6 block area consistently, having never known the origin before. This happened two weeks ago when we learned of a garage with 15+ cats living inside, then the location across the street from it that had more than a dozen, and so on, resulting in at least 40 cats that needed to be TNR'd.

We are averaging 1,000 spay/neuters a year and bringing approximately 400 kittens and friendlies inside each year. Everyone in TNR asks, "what if we hadn't been doing this - how much euthanization would be going on?" A tremendous number of cats and kittens would be euthanized each year, each month, each week, if we were not doing TNR.

Thank you to everyone who helps us with our NUMBERS!
Feral Fixers Logo Don't forget to follow us on Facebook!

Feral Fixers has a very active Facebook page.  You can go there and get the very latest information about what we are doing - many times even before it shows up on the blog!

Don't forget to "Like" us and the good karma will surely flow your way...

To find our Facebook page, click on the Facebook logo.
New York tries to get serious about TNR

On October 14th, The State Assembly of New York delivered legislation to Governor Cuomo that will greatly assist in TNR efforts.  This article is an excellent summation of the efforts behind the legislation while this article contains a very fine video about TNR in New York.

Feral Fixers president Tammy McAuley adds these comments:

"This is what is happening in New York - can you imagine Governor Rauner supporting legislation to offset the costs of TNR?  The video shows trapping in action - my recommendations differ:  put food on the ground and set the trap on top of it, food squeezing up thru mesh, no newspaper in trap to blow around, leaving towel casually placed on trap, bunched in the middle gives the cats more security to hide as you walk up to pick up trap - much less thrashing and towel is already there to cover cat with.  The video demonstrates how much work goes into TNR - we don't have a truck that can cruise the neighborhoods, picking up the trapped cats (wow, strapping towers of traps in place), cats are brought to us and we transport them on to PAWS.  What if they could go to this extent in the city of Chicago?  So much progress could be made!  Great video, showing the kitten consequences of TNR!"

Unfortunately, the bill has been vetoed by the Governor (you can click here to follow the bills progress).  Tammy has this to say about the veto:

"Unfortunately the bill was vetoed by the governor of New York on10/26/15.  Its current status is now "tabled."  Still, its a huge leap forward that it was proposed at all and it may be re-tooled and come up for vote again.  Getting information about TNR into everyday dialogue can make a huge difference!"
Feral Fixers Wish List

SPECIAL NOTE - We have recently updated our Wish List on this site.  If you haven't visited it recently, we invite you to do so again in the near future - Thank you!

Want to help Feral Fixers by purchasing something that we really could use?  Then check out our Wish List on Amazon.  It contains many items listed that we would greatly appreciate and they are shipped directly to us!

This is a wonderful way to help Feral Fixers.  Many people prefer to support a charitable organization by purchasing items for them rather than sending them a donation and this is a way you can do so.

To find the Feral Fixers Wish List on, just go to their website and click on the Wish List link near the top, right-hand corner of the page.  Then enter the words "Feral Fixers" (without the quotation marks) into the box that says "Find Someone's Wish List" and hit Enter.  You'll then be presented with all of the items currently on that Feral Fixers would like to have.  Add the item(s) you wish to donate to your Shopping Cart in the normal manner and, when you pay for them, they'll be ordered and shipped directly to Feral Fixers!

And, if you order from the AmazonSmile website (see instructions elsewhere in this eNewsletter for instructions on how to do so), you'll help us in an additional way - you'll have donated one or more items to us AND 1/2% of your purchase price will also be additionally donated to Feral Fixers (this only applies to items that are so eligible - shown in the description of them item).

Thank you!
Thank you P.A.W.S. !!!

The P.A.W.S. Club of Wheaton North High School spent their afternoon and early evening on Friday, October 2nd, collecting donations for animal welfare at the local Jewel.  They prepare a wish list and hand them out to shoppers on their way into the store and collect the donations from the shoppers as they exit.  So simple and so generous of the P.A.W.S. club to spend their time helping us!
Want to help?

Interested in helping Feral Fixers? We are looking for a 'few good volunteers'! Specifically, we're looking for someone to help us transport cats to and from PAWS (the Spay/Neuter clinic we use) in Chicago.

We need transport both in the morning and the afternoon. If you're interested in helping, call us at (630) 881-FXRS (3977) or email us at
Feral Cat Shelter Options

It's going to be winter soon and our Feral friends are going to need shelter from the cold and the snow.  Our good friends at Alley Cat Allies have put together a very comprehensive list of Shelter options, including both ready-made and do-it-yourself options.

Alley Cat Allies also has done a short 'review' of each item, giving the pros and cons of each, so that you can make a more informed decision for your unique location.

This really is an excellent list and you are sure to find options that will help you to help our furry friends.
Fosters are needed now!

We currently have lots adult cats that have decided that the life inside is for them!  And the kitten avalanche is happening NOW!  Many of these adults are very calm and so very grateful for the opportunity to come inside - please help us, help them!  And, although they can be messy, who can resist a litter of kittens!

We do our best to work with fosters but they need to:  
  • Be in easy driving distance of Lombard - emergencies happen and being 45 minutes away, one way, is just not a good idea.
  • Have only one or few animals of their own - asking someone to take on 4 additional cats when they already have 4++ animals on hand could be a problem
  • Spend a reasonable amount of time at home - someone who travels or has long work days cannot sufficiently support the behavior modification that is sometimes necessary with young kittens
Be clear about expectations of us and ask plenty of questions!

In return, fosters receive so much love and affection from these cats and the knowledge that they are part of the pipeline of Rescue - getting them ready for their forever homes!

Please, Help Us Help Them!
Feral Cats Guard Chicago Brewery

No, that's not a misprint - Feral cats really ARE guarding a Chicago Brewery.  As part of Chicago Tree House's Cats At Work program where they re-house feral cats into locations where they can 'earn their keep', several feral cats have been housed at Empirical, a Chicago brewery, to control rodents.

In an article in DNAinfo, columnist Patty Wetli talks about how this program came about.  From the article:

"...Though cats might seem like an unusual solution to a brewery's pest control problems, tabbies have been on rodent patrol at distilleries for centuries.
Among the best-known whiskered whisky guardians:

Towser the Mouser once prowled Scotland's Glenturret distillery (in operation since 1775). His estimated 28,899 lifetime mouse kills earned him a place in Guinness World Records.

Staff at the Jameson distillery are rumored to have paid their cats in milk and so loved a mouser named Smitty that they had him stuffed and mounted in the distillery's rafters.

In the digital age, distillery cats have their own Instagram page, where you're likely to find photos of Carlos and Jeffey, who rid New York's Kings County Distillery of a mouse invasion after Hurricane Sandy..."

So, if you're a beer drinker (or anyone who appreciates 'green' solutions to problems), tip your cat (and your bottle) to Tree House and Empirical for adopting a win-win solution to pest control.
Celebrate 5500 T-Shirts now on Sale!

The highly-collectible T-Shirts which were given out to attendees of the Celebrate 5500! event are now for sale for only $10 each (including shipping to anywhere in the US)!

Limited quantities are still available and can be ordered from the Feral Fixers website.  Don't delay - they're going fast!

Click on the T-Shirt to buy!
The Dancing Cat Studio

More and more it's becoming the norm to present cats for adoption in a restful and homelike atmosphere, as opposed to the walls of cages which used to be standard.

This article describes one such site, The Dancing Cat, located in San Jose, CA.

From the article:

"The Dancing Cat is a non-profit pop-up cat adoption lounge in the heart of Silicon Valley. The space opened in May and will operate through November 15, 2015. The lounge was created in a old store front as a temporary event to test the concept as a prototype for a possible permanent project...The cats have all kinds of amenities: big, bright windows to look out, comfy beds to nap on, cat trees, shelves and perches for climbing, cat grass to munch on and, of course, plenty of cat toys to keep them busy. They also have a private sanctuary in the back, if they need to get away for a break."

It's a great idea, great article and wonderful pictures - check it out!
Shop on ebay - Help Feral Fixers!

Did you know that some of your purchases on ebay can directly help Feral Fixers?  When a seller posts an item, they can designate a charity to donate a portion of the proceeds to.  Several people have done so for Feral Fixers.  When you purchase one or more of these items, a portion of the sale is donated directly to Feral Fixers!

You don't have to register anything, submit any coupons, fill out any forms, etc.  All you have to do is to purchase an item whose seller has designated Feral Fixers as their Charity of Choice.

If you follow this link, you can see all the items on ebay that have Feral Fixers as a designated charity.

Our thanks to those sellers who have so-designated Feral Fixers - your contributions are greatly appreciated!  And, if you are a seller and would like to start designating Feral Fixers as a Charity, instructions on how to do so are shown on the same page.

Thank you!
How many cats? - 8,286!!

# of cats fixed

Clicking on the Calculator will send you to the Feral Fixers 'Statistics' page where you can see our progress, month-by-month, since we've started work.
Shop on Amazon - Help Feral Fixers!

Feral Fixers is now a designated charity on, the website which offers a gazillion items for sale.  A great many of these items have been designated eligible for "amazonsmile", a program that automatically donates 1/2% of the purchase price of the item to the charity of your choice.

Instead of signing on to, sign on to instead.  You'll then be able to designate a "Favorite charity".  Enter "Feral Fixers" where asked to and then Feral Fixers will be eligible for these donations.

In order for you to then purchase amazonsmile items, you will always need to sign in to  This is the same website you've always enjoyed - all of the products are still listed, but note that not every item on Amazon is "amazonsmile" eligible.  Items that are eligible are clearly designated as such in the description.

So, register Feral Fixers as your favorite charity and help us help the cats!

Thank you!
PayPal DonationDonate to Feral Fixers 

Feral Fixers offers its TNR services to all colony caretakers, without charge.  While we ask for donations from colony caretakers, we recognize that for some of them, any additional cost is just too much.  Therefore we rely on donations from other individuals to make up the difference and allow us to continue our work.  These donations allow us to spay/neuter additional cats, keep a 'bank' of traps and trap dividers we loan out for free, hold workshops and provide other educational benefits.

You can help us continue our work by clicking on the Donate button, above.  This will take you to the PayPal website where you can donate to Feral Fixers via PayPal or credit card.  Feral Fixers is a registered 501c3 charitable organization and all donations are deductible to the fullest amount allowed by law.

We greatly appreciate any amount you can afford to give - Thank You!
Event Calendar  
November 14 & 15, 2015 - PetSmart Charities Adoption Event!! - As part of PetSmart's National Adoption Weekend, Feral Fixers will be hosting an adoption event at the PetSmart located at 63 Rice Lake Square in Wheaton from 11am to 3pm on Saturday, November 14 AND Sunday, November 15. All of our cats/kittens are in Foster homes, are spayed/neutered, current on their vaccinations, microchipped, dewormed and FeLV/FIV tested. If you would like to get pre-approved for same-day adoption, please email us (by Thursday, November 12th) at You can see all of our adoptable cats by clicking on the " Adoptable Cats" link at the top of our website.

November 19, 2015 - Last day for Ferals!
This day will be our last spay/neuter run in 2015 for feral cats. We may make a few more trips in December for friendlies, but we are closing down Feral operations on November 19th.  See you again in March (maybe)!  All depends on the weather!

December 1, 2015 - #GivingTuesday - This will be the third year we will participate in the ever-growing #GivingTuesday Fundraiser. Once again this year, our theme will be "Black Cats" and helping us to help them to find a home. More details will be posted as we get closer to the Fundraiser date.

January 17, 2016 - Frosty Claws! - This is the EIGHTH EDITION of our annual Frosty Claws Fundraiser! It will be held at the VFW #2801 located at 39 E St. Charles Road in Villa Park. We'll have hot drinks, pastries, a boutique, a Silent Auction and, of course, a very cat-friendly crowd! This event is a crowd-favorite and is always well-attended. Tickets are $15/person at the door but to learn how you can get the 'Early Bird' price, visit our Web Flyer for the details. Come and help us celebrate our eighth anniversary - see you there!
Shop for Feral Fixers

Want to purchase something purr-fect for your cat-lover friends and help out Feral Fixers at the same time?  Just visit our CafePress store and Buy Something! In addition to the Holiday ornament shown to the right, we have T-shirts, sweatshirts, aprons, mouse pads, gym bags, messenger bags, coffee mugs, tote-bags, pet food bowls, Pajamas and much, much more! A portion of each sale goes to help us in our TNR efforts.

To visit the store, just click on the Holiday ornament or visit our website and click on the ' CafePress' button at the top - Thank you!
Visit us on the Web 

Visit our website at  There you can donate to us (via PayPal or credit card), visit our store, read the latest news, and learn more about feral cats.

If this newsletter has been forwarded to you, you can also sign up to be on our mailing list so you don't miss a thing!
What is Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR)?

TNR CatTNR is a full management plan in which stray and feral cats already living outdoors in cities, towns, and rural areas are humanely trapped, evaluated, vaccinated, and sterilized by veterinarians.

When space is available, adoptable cats and kittens are transferred to sheltering organizations to be adopted into good homes. Healthy adult cats unsocialized to humans are returned to their familiar habitat under the lifelong care of their original caretakers.
Feral Fixers, NFP, is a certified 501c3 corporation - EIN Number 13-4364615