In 2016, the Township of South Orange Village enacted a new method to combat feral cat overpopulation by trapping and removing cats. This method is called Trap, Neuter, Vaccinate and Return (TNVR).
TNVR is a process that involves humanely trapping feral cats, spaying or neutering them, vaccinating them against rabies and other common illnesses, and returning them to their outdoor “home” to live out their lives. A “colony caretaker” provides food, fresh water and adequate shelter to the colony cats and monitors their health.
There are an estimated 50 million feral cats in the US according to the Humane Society of the United States. Unfortunately, feral cats have reverted to a wild state and are not appropriate as house pets so those that wind up in the shelter system are almost always euthanized. Every year, tens of thousands of feral cats are euthanized in NJ’s shelters simply because there is no alternative.
South Orange will enlist a local animal welfare organization, People for Animals (PFA) to help administer the program in order to reduce the cost burden to taxpayers. PFA has operated a low-cost spay/neuter clinic in Hillside for 30 years and will be serving as the program’s “Sponsor.” The Sponsor is responsible for monitoring and administrating the TNVR Program. This includes responding to and abating nuisance complaints about cat’s outdoors, overseeing cat caretakers, raising funds to support the program, and reporting statistics about the program to the Board of Health and Health Department annually.
Starting September 2018 St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center will offer Animal Control Services to South Orange. St. Hubert's will also be in charge of our TNVR program.