Guidelines for Feeding and Managing Colonies
The first rule of colony-management is that if you feed then you must TNR (Trap, Neuter, Return). A well-fed colony that is not spayed and neutered will lead to rapid population growth.
If you Feed them – Fix them
The following is based on you managing your colony with TNR and providing sustenance.
Discretion is key when feeding
- Discretion especially in private or residential locations is crucial.
- Feed neatly against a wall or behind trees/bushes, away from public view.
- Feeding should not attract unwanted attention that may put the cats in danger by those who oppose their existence.
- Make sure you clean up afterwards not leaving any trace of food, residents worry about hygiene, don’t give them a reason to complain.
Indiscretion = unwanted attention = danger
Food portion control
- Food portions should be enough for the cats you see when feeding, we suggest a handful of kibble per cat.
- Distribute small neat separate piles for each cat, or bowls with just enough food for the cats present.
- Leaving extra food for cats that haven’t shown up at the time of feeding will lead to piles of unsightly uneaten food.
- Leaving too much of food will attract new cats to the area, pushing out old colony members, creating an unstable traffic of cats.
- If members of the colony are not around and miss out on a feed, don’t feel bad, they will become hungry and will show up the next day.
Over-feeding = mismanagement = danger
- We advise the street cats are fed good quality food such as Royal Canine Fit32 or Josera.
- Less goes a longer way with good quality food, especially when investing in the 10kg bag.
- Quality food provides the protein and nutrients much needed for cats living on the street.
- Cats will eat quality brands of cat food and leave no unsightly trace of food, helping the cats’ existence to be less noticeable.
Poor-quality uneaten food = messy = danger
- Never underestimate the importance of water as part of the care package we offer the community cats.
- Dehydration can be a huge problem with medical attention needed if severe
- Sizable bowls are recommended and 3-4 litres (can be more depending on size of colony) as a minimum.
- Water should be replenished daily.
No water/unclean water = mismanagement = dehydration = medical assistance needed
If you are met with an audience as you feed here are tips on how to handle reactions you might face.
Curiosity – the curious might watch but not necessarily keep a distance, risking scaring the cats. Don’t be afraid to politely let them know its OK to watch but better for the cats if they keep a distance.
Hostility – hostility is never easy, but remember you are backed by a team called TNR Qatar, so don’t feel alone in this situation!
In either situation mention TNR Qatar and refer them to our website.
- Any queries they may have, ask them to message or email us.
- Mention we are an organised team.
- Tell them all the cats are clean and healthy.
- No need for any in-depth explanation of spay/neuter at this stage.
- Our priorities are to feed, water and look out for any medical assistance required.
- Avoid trying to domesticate the cats as their tentative nature is also their survival.
- Keep in mind that not everyone feels the care and love towards these creatures as we do, so domesticating them into friendlies could become their weakness.
Too friendly = unwanted attention = danger
Preparation is key! We suggest keeping the following in your car:
- Carrier or trap
- Drop Cloth
- Wet and dry food
Please follow the above guidelines to keep your colony safe.
For expatriates planning ahead isn’t always that simple, however please consider that it is often difficult to find another person to take over your colony if you have to leave Qatar. Ideally manage a colony with a group of like-minded cat lovers on a rota, or find your replacement as far in advance as possible.