Anyone who has ever been involved with change, and that’s everyone, can agree that its not easy. After all, most change is required because something isn’t working anymore, and it got that way because it was easier to maintain the status quo for long enough that problems arose.
Such is the case with the efforts the City of Hoisington has called for to get an overabundance of stray cats in check. A new policy was implemented to introduce trap, neuter and return measures for male cats picked up in the city limits. And in the past few months, the city’s new Code Enforcement Officer, Dolores Kipper, has been diligently enforcing the new policy with noticeable results.
What the city council didn’t take into consideration back in March when they agreed to give TNR a try was what it would mean to actually carry out the project. Council members expressed mild concern at Monday night’s meeting over the increased billing received by the Hoisington Veterinary Clinic for pound services including TNP. They also learned that rather than turning a profit for these services, Lindsay Mitchell, DVM, is working with Kipper to accommodate the upswing in needed services during these early months of the project. In October, 40 cats were treated. Some simple math reveals, if half were female, that’s 20 fewer cats producing litters that on the average contain six to eight kittens, and come on average three to four times a year. That’s nearly 100 fewer cats the city will have to deal with in just one year. And, as progress is made, fewer will need to be treated in the coming months the theory goes.
Change can be rocky, it's true. We hope the city stays the course, however, and comes out on the other end as a positive example for neighboring communities that may grapple with similar issues today and into the future.