To reduce the stray cat population, Lakewood City Council is eyeing a plan that would trap feral cats in a colony, neuter and release them back into their territory.
After discussions with the Lakewood Animal Safety and Welfare Board — the citizen-led panel that reviews animal issues in the city — council proposed a “trap-neuter-release” program.
The idea, as laid out in the proposal, would stabilize the size of the colony by eliminating new litters.
The measure was proposed by Council President Mary Louise Madigan and Councilman Tom Bullock.
“Proponents of TNR argue it is the only method proven to humanely and effectively control feral cat population growth, reducing nuisance behavior associated with feral cats,” Madigan said. “Some communities implementing TNR programs have lessened the number of cats flowing into local shelters, thereby lowering euthanasia rates.”
She said the LASWAB is exploring the possibility of the program in Lakewood, adding that the board could pursue grant money and recruit and train volunteers.
“Given their dedication, and given the success of other communities have experienced when (they) implement TNR programs," Madigan said, "we believe Lakewood should implement a TNR pilot project to learn whether TNR can be successful in our community.”
The resolution was referred to the public safety committee for further discussion.