Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR)

Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) is an effective and humane way to stabilize feral cat populations. Cats are humanely trapped and taken to a veterinarian, where they are neutered and vaccinated.† Cats that have undergone the procedure are eartipped (while under anesthesia, a small portion of the left ear is painlessly removed for identification). If healthy, the cats are then released back to their colony site, where they are often provided continuing care by volunteers. This also provides an avenue for rescuing homeless cats that are adoptable, as friendly cats and kittens are placed up for adoption.

TNR helps the community by stabilizing the population of the feral colony and, over time, reducing it. At the same time, nuisance behaviors such as spraying, loud noise and fighting are largely eliminated and no more kittens are born. In addition, TNR also helps the community’s animal welfare resources by reducing the number of kittens that would end up in their shelters, creating more space for the cats and kittens who come to them from other avenues.

For more information about TNR, please visit Animal Rescue of Tidewater.

†Definitions and content adapted from Alley Cat Allies.  For more information, please visit:


One thought on “Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR)

  1. TNR or now the now new phrase of TAR (Trap Alter Release) is a great program in Hampton Roads. I do pet adoptions every Sunday at PetsMart and every week folks as for assistance with feral cats. Many work at businesses where employees feed and like their cats. They just don’t know how to “catch” them and have them “fixed.” OR they don’t have a lot of money to pay to have them spayed/neutered. OR… there are a lot of reasons. However, they are very much appreciated when TNR volunteers come in and assist. In the last 8 weeks, another volunteer and I have TNR 25 cats! We could do more with more funding!

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