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Wow! Where has this week gone? Today finds us with another installment of Feral Cat Friday. As summer marches on and fall is in sight, we in rescue anxiously await the days where the steady flow of babies slows to a trickle. However, we also dread those included in that trickle. It is not uncommon for queen cats to have multiple litters each year. By late August and beyond, these litters are typically their second or even third bunch in about 6 months or less. By now, moms are tired and their health reserves have been tapped dry. Many mothers find themselves pregnant again before completely weaning the previous litter! That is an unhealthy scenario for mom, older babies, and new babies. In addition, late season kittens tend to be smaller, unhealthy with a general failure to thrive, and have a higher mortality rate than their early in the year siblings. Summer is the busiest time for our TNR program, with many people reaching out only AFTER their pet or local street cat has had kittens. However, just because fall and winter months are near, don’t think you and your cat are in the clear until next year. Most vets prefer to wait until a litter is weaned before spaying the mother. It should be done as soon as possible after weaning and the milk starts to dry up. It is possible, however, to spay a cat while they are nursing if the need is there. Granby’s TNR program is currently booking appointments for mid-September for spays and neuters. I have also received word that Spare Cat Rescue has certificates available now for only $15. Reach out to them during the their adoption Saturdays at Petsmart in Joplin. There may be an additional fee due at time of surgery to bring your pet current on it’s rabies vaccine.