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Animal Population Control - 2008 Feral Cat Grant Program-CT

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The Connecticut Department of Agriculture introduced in fiscal year 2007, a new grant program to provide up to $40,000 in vaccination/sterilization benefits for feral cats. The inception of this program was due largely to the success of the agency’s Animal Population Control Program (APCP), which would be administering the program. This would be a first for Connecticut and believed to be a first in the country from a state agency for feral cats. Legislation passed in 2001, stated that the Commissioner of Agriculture may set aside up to $40,000 dollars each fiscal year for the purpose of providing assistance to non-profit groups for the sterilization/vaccination of feral cats. The agency defines a feral cat as being wild by nature and has not been domesticated.

Previously, that assistance had not been available due to program financial constraints. However, the APCP has slowly seen a downward trend in the number of dogs and cats impounded and adopted from municipal facilities over the past thirteen years and Agriculture Commissioner F. Philip Prelli felt the time was right to make these funds available. The APCP has provided vaccination/sterilization benefits to more that 18,000 adopted dogs and cats since 2001 and over 50,000 pets since the program’s inception in 1995. Up to now, the only way to receive program benefits was by rescuing a pet from one of the approximately 150 municipal impound facilities in Connecticut.

Approximately twenty-five (25) applications were received resulting in grant awards to eleven (11) Connecticut groups. Organizations were given seven (7) months to use the vouchers, which had a March 31, 2007 expiration date. Vouchers were issued equal to the monetary award granted to the organization. Each voucher provides a benefit of two vaccines and the sterilization of the cat. The average monetary benefit per cat is $80. Vouchers could be used at any of the 219 practices participating in the program, although many veterinarians prefer not to handle “ferals†because of their unsocialized nature.

For the 2007 feral cat grant inception year, 500 vouchers were issued and 479 were used for a 96% sterilization rate. From that total, 246 cats were females and 233 were males.

The Department is set to initiate its second Feral Cat Grant Program starting August 1, 2007. The APCP will be accepting applications up to the deadline date of September 29, 2007, To receive an application, please contact the APCP office at (860) 713-2507, Monday through Friday, 8:00am to 4:30pm or use this link: APPLICATION FOR FERAL CAT 2008 GRANT

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That is awesome!
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