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TNR of feral cats now legal in Round Rock, Texas

by Therese on December 6, 2007

in Austin pets, Cats


Trap, Neuter, Return (TNR) is now legal in Round Rock Texas, a community just outside Austin. TNR is recognized by many as the most effective way to manage feral cat colonies, and backed by Alley Cat Allies, a leading proponent of TNR. In Round Rock, there have been a few groups working illegally over the past few years working hard with the feral cat colonies there. Now, with the new ruling, they will be able to do it without the fear of being fined for their work.

If you don’t look closely, you’ll probably miss them.They live under abandoned homes and trailers and come out only to eat. Like Austin, Round Rock has hundreds, if not thousands, of feral cats. And now, like in Austin, Round Rock residents will be able to legally trap the cats, take them to a clinic to be spayed or neutered, and return them to the wild.

Animal advocates say it’s the most effective way to reduce the wild cat population.

“It’s actually a really out-of-control situation,” said Donna Powell, who founded Street Cat Rescue, a Round Rock-based organization that had been trapping, neutering and releasing cats illegally for a few years.

Central Texas is the ideal environment for feral cat colonies to develop and flourish, said Leticia Stivers, the Austin Humane Society’s feral cat program coordinator.

Creeks provide water, crickets and critters provide food, and the warm weather means that “kitten season” lasts all year.


That is true in Round Rock, said Sheila Smith, founder of ShadowCats Rescue, another organization that traps, neuters and releases feral cats.

Smith’s and Powell’s groups feed and keep track of about 30 colonies in the Round Rock area. One colony southeast of town has about 400 cats, Smith said.

The organizations’ efforts have paid off, Smith said. One of her success stories is a colony in central Round Rock that was once home to 45 cats.


The colony is down to about 10 cats now, and there haven’t been any kittens for two years, Smith said.


Trapping, neutering and releasing feral cats back into the wild is now legal in Round Rock, but ShadowCats Rescue and Street Cats Rescue by law must organize all efforts to do so. They offer trapping classes to volunteers. The organizations also have adoptable cats that need homes.

Read the full story from the Austin American-Statesman.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Peggy June 2, 2011 at 9:38 pm

I need some help. I moved here from California 15 months ago and live in an apartment complex in Round Rock, Texas. I live on a ground floor and just about the time I moved in a gorgeous Tuxedo cat came to my patio and I realized she was hungry. I fed her my cat’s food (I have a huge Orange Tabby Male Cat 3 yrs old) and the next thing I knew she brought her 4 gorgeous babies. I now am on my 3rd litter(by the way some people here adopted the previous ones). I feed them good food. They literally just live on my patio and some idiot claims he is allergic to cats and now management wants no feeding of any animal on anyone’s patio. I’ve tried various agencies but I have no way to take these cats to get spayed/neutered and they want me to just stop feeding them. I’ve called the Humane Society for a pickup and it’s killing me that they will be killed. Can anyone help me on this?
Peggy Krainman


Therese June 4, 2011 at 10:06 am

Peggy, I’m sorry to hear about the idiot you’re having to deal with. See the Austin Rescue website for a list of rescue groups. There are a number of cat groups on the list. Hopefully one of them will be able to help you. http://www.austinrescue.com/


Peggy June 4, 2011 at 8:40 pm

Thank you so much Theresa. I really value the info you have sent me. I am so going to defocus on this negative behavior from this guy and I am going to contact this local paper we have in this area.

I will find a home for these beautiful cats and will concentrate on getting this gorgeous mom fixed. I am going to take all this negative energy that is being concentrated on these beautiful lives and bring good things to them. Thanks so much for caring Therese. I hope I spelled your name right. 🙂


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