The weekend dates were set and the invites sent out. Volunteer signup lists were posted and donations began rolling in. Bleach, paper towels and plastic gloves lined tables. No it wasn’t for any epidemic supplies…not in the way that you think. The excitement in the air was in anticipation of an upcoming islands 2020 TNR Weekend Event.
Because this year’s event garnered the attention of three “crazy cat guys” who happily joined the islanders, trapping 75 cats in total!
It began weeks in advance when the Chincoteague Island Community Cats organization in Virginia, announced the dates for their event. So locals were instructed to keep their pets indoors during the weekend. They needed to be sure they wouldn’t interfere with the feline’s attempting to be trapped.
Because with more than 100 colonies of cats confirmed on the approximately 38 square mile island, they needed all they luck they could get!
Preparing for these events is not as easy as it sounds either, simply having to compete with hurricane season and/or Covid-19 for their required supply lists. But the support they received for their gorgeous island came from near and far.
Monique Roske, treasurer of Chincoteague Island Community Cats spoke about the group’s upcoming TNR (trap-neuter-release) weekend clinic Nov. 12 to 15. Volunteers are coming from as far away as New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and Maryland for the clinic.
So who are the three cat men that united for this amazing weekend, travelling just to trap cats!?
Well their names say it all really. First up, Sterling “TrapKing” Davis, because it was his social media posts that alerted us of the weekend. Full disclosure, also because he has been subjected to Cat Man Chris’s shenanigans in the past.
But with “Trap” literally in your moniker, Sterling lives up to it daily. Based in Atlanta, he spends his life travelling to cities to educate, train on TNR and break down stereotypes within the male demographic, African American and animal rescue communities. So when he heard of an entire island planning on trapping over 100 cats, he knew he had to be there and share in their mission.
Sterling wasn’t the only ‘crazy cat guy’ that was happy to live up to his name again though. He joined forces with his friend during this event, the Cowboy Cat Wrangler, Bob Lynch based in Pennsylvania. Not only does Bob also educate and promote TNR wherever he can, he takes care of 50 colony cats of his own each day!
The trifecta was balanced out by another ameowzing man, Angelo Ruffo, who has dubbed himself “The Mad Catter”. And his motto is quite meaningful and inspiring. Nothing “mad” about that to me!
Save the ones you can, morn the ones you can’t, but never stop.
With the three cat-tastic men on board for the event and the overwhelming support from the entire island community, it was a success whether they caught 1 or 100.
Because getting people actively working for the well being of stray and feral cats is a HUGE success. And yes, faces were covered in masks…because taking care of yourself is still the number one priority.
Sterling humbly mentioned that the island community already had the drive to help behind them and just needed the physical traps to really implement that.
The Chincoteague Island Community Cats shared the final numbers on their Facebook page on Monday.
SUCCESS! AMAZING VOLUNTEERS MADE THIS HAPPEN…** 75 cats TNR’d(altered, rabies & FVRCP vaccines, flea meds, microchip, eartip)** 6 eartipped cats received a rabies vaccine** 23 kittens rounded up
(20 kittens transported yesterday, today & tomorrow by rescue organizations and placed in the rescue’s foster/adoption programs)** 3 kittens being cared for by CICC with a game plan in the works
You may be rare for now, but 3 these gents are paving the way for everyone to see that, “You don’t lose cool points for compassion” ~ Sterling Davis.