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Chicago Releases 1,000 Feral Cats To Fight Rat Infestation

by : Niamh Shackleton on : 12 May 2021 13:52
Chicago Releases 1,000 Feral Cats To Fight Rat InfestationWGN9

A Chicago animal shelter has released 1,000 feral cats in a bid to fight the city’s ongoing rat infestations.

The Tree House Humane Society began its Cats at Work programme back in 2012 and not only does it give the cats a place to stay, but it helps deter rats from areas they’re not wanted.

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Since the programme began, the shelter has released more than 1,000 cats in Chicago, who are now apparently ‘living their best lives’.

Tree House’s website explains:

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After trapping and neutering a Community Cat, there are times when those cats cannot be reintegrated into their former colonies. This can be for a variety of reasons, including their former location being demolished (as in the case of cats living in abandoned buildings,) dangerous locations, etc. It is for these special cases that Tree house created the Cats at Work program.

The cats don’t actually eat the rats, however. Sarah Liss from the shelter told WGN9 that, while the cats will kill the rats when they first arrive at their new location, it’s the felines’ pheromones that keeps them away.

Tree House’s website further details that cats are placed two or three at a time into residential or commercial settings to tackle Chicago’s rat problem in an ‘environmentally friendly way’. While they don’t stay in someone’s actual home, property and business owners provide the cats with food, water and shelter, and generally keen an eye on them.

Cats eating (PA Images)PA Images
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Apparently, in most cases, the working cats go on to become ‘beloved members of the family or team’. Some have even gone on to have their own Instagram pages.

The site added, ‘These are feral cats who wouldn’t thrive in a home or shelter environment. By placing them in Cats at Work colonies, we’re able to make sure they’re living their best lives.’

Sounds like the purrfect solution.

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Niamh Shackleton

Niamh Shackleton is a pint sized person and journalist at UNILAD. After studying Multimedia Journalism at the University of Salford, she did a year at Caters News Agency as a features writer in Birmingham before deciding that Manchester is (arguably) one of the best places in the world, and therefore moved back up north. She's also UNILAD's unofficial crazy animal lady.

Topics: Animals, Animal Shelter, Cats, Chicago, Now, Rats

Credits

Tree House Animals and 1 other
  1. Tree House Animals

    CATS AT WORK

  2. WGN9

    Meet the cats fighting Chicago’s rat problem