By: Robin Desmet – Feb. 2017
Although I volunteer for the MSPCA, I am always pleased to learn of other organizations that are involved in cat rescue. I recently had the chance to speak with Diana LeBlanc, who is a volunteer with Billerica Cat Care Coalition (BCCC).
The BCCC is a cat rescue and adoption organization that was started in 2004 and is based in Billerica, MA. The BCC provides protection and humane treatment for feral and abandoned cats, as well as owned cats and kittens. They also provide education and outreach to pet owners and the public.
BCCC implemented a Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) program for the feral cats in their area in order to provide a humane means of dealing with feral cat overpopulation. They participate in a monthly spay/neuter clinic which is held at Nevins Farm in Methuen. The cats are trapped and transported to Methuen where volunteer veterinarians vaccinate and spay or neuter the cats. While under anesthesia, the cats left ear is “tipped” so that the cat can easily be identified as already spayed/neutered to help prevent the cat from being trapped and transported again. The following day, the cats are released back to their neighborhood where there are people who provide shelter and food for them.
TNR is a program that is being practiced by many rescue organizations as a humane solution for dealing with feral cat overpopulation. TNR helps reduce suffering and helps alleviate the problem of multiple litters of kittens being born in the wild—many of whom do not survive. TNR helps to reduce the number of homeless cats and helps eliminate the nuisance behavior that is often associated with feral cats, such as fighting and marking of territory. TNR also helps to reduce the number of cats and kittens that are surrendered to local shelters and therefore increases the rate of adoption for the animals that are already in the shelters.
In addition to TNR, BCCC offers advice and assistance to residents dealing with stray or abandoned cats that are not feral, and cats that need to be re-homed. BCCC will help with both fostering and adoption. BCCC does not operate an animal shelter, so all of their adoptable animals are cared for in private foster homes. The cats are adopted out using social media and websites such as Petfinder and Adopt A Pet. BCCC also participates in Meet and Greet events where the public can see many of their adoptable animals at once.
BCCC works closely with local animal control officers and helps assist in cases where medical treatment is needed for injured cats. BCCC is a non-profit organization that relies on donations in order to operate. They hold several fundraising events each year which help pay for veterinary care and food for the feral and foster cats in their program.
Their annual “Meow Mixer” will be held on Friday, April 28, 2017, at The Holiday Inn, 4 Highwood Drive, Tewksbury, MA. The event is from 6:30-9 PM and features hot and cold hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar, desserts, and a silent auction.
Tickets for the event can be purchased online at www.billericacatcarecoalition.org or in person at The Cat Doctor in Bedford, or Middlesex County Animal Hospital in North Billerica.
Tickets may also be purchased at the door for $35 on the night of the event. Please come out and support The BCCC and help save some cats!
You can email Robin at email@example.com