Pound Pooch

diary of a shelter worker.


humane traps

We "rent" out traps to help people catch stray and feral cats that are in there area. People borrow these traps with a deposit and get their money back when they bring back the trap. The traps vary in size and shape, but are designed to humanely catch cats.

When we rent out these traps, we explain to peole that we do NOT want them to catch wildlife. We explain how to best avoid catching wildlife (trapping when it's light out, etc.), and we tell them that if they do catch skunks, possums, raccoons- they need to release these animals. Most people are very understanding about this.

Two days ago, I received two calls that were a little unclear on the concept. One elderly lady wanted to catch a ferret. She believed that the ferret had been living in her apartment since October, though she had only sighted it twice. I explained that I did not think that the trap would actually work for a ferret. She informed me that I just didn't want to help her, just like the exterminators. I suggested that perhaps the exterminators were a good way to go- that, or pest control. She became quite annoyed at me with me: she did NOT want the ferret exterminated. I explained to her that ferrets are illegal where we live, and that if she trapped the ferret and brought it to us, we would be legally bound to "exterminate" it, as well. At this point, the woman was convinced that I was out to get her, and told me that she needed to go wax her car, and she would just move out of her apartment.

Later that day, a man called and told me he wanted to trap some animals. Apparantly he has a cat he needs to catch (fine), and some pigeons (not so fine). I explained to him the usual- we don't trap wildlife. The pigeons, he told me, through a heavy accent, are in his house. It is dirty, like on the pier. I explained that I could not rent a trap out to him if he was going to trap pigeons. I told him that the trap probably wouldn't work for pigeons (or ferrets, but he wasn't interested) and that he needed to leave the birds alone. He told me he'd think about it.

These calls made kitten season seem a little more... sane.


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