Lucky kids can choose from an array of enrichment camps. Music, art, sports, space –anything goes. Wouldn’t it be AWESOME if cat-loving kids opted for Trap-Neuter-Return taught at a TNR Camp?
Exploration would include finding trails and tracking paw prints to locate colonies and feeding stations. Curriculum would include feline behavior, wellness, and the benefits of juvenile spay/neuter. Kids would learn how to use humane traps, in-trap care, and how to estimate age and weight for pre-op meds. They would live in boxes, snack all day, and sleep for hours on top of furniture.
Before the digital age, camp kids wrote letters to their parents to chronicle the day. Remember the 1963 hit, Allan Sherman’s letter from camp?
Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah is a portrait of boredom and loneliness. The song lays out complaints after his first day and the promises made if only he can escape Camp Granada and come home.
Let’s pretend there is a TNR Camp and have some fun with the letter from camp, which might go like this:
Hello muddah, hello faddah. Here I am at Camp Entrada, which is very entertaining and they say we’ll trap some cats if it stops raining.
Now, I don’t want this should scare ya, but the cats here cause hysteria! And the campground wants no litters, so spay/neuter is the rule for three-pound critters.
I set two traps, rather slyly. Turned out it was poison ivy. Lynyrd Skynyrd knew of shivery: they sang black cats crossing trails cause double misery!!
Traps are vexed by pollinators and the lake has alligators! And the head coach, Mabel Molehundt, nightly bets on eartipped cats as they chase rodents!
Take me home! Oh muddah, faddah, take me home! I miss my bruddah. Don’t leave me to track down all these cats. I might get eaten by a rat!
Wait a minute; it stopped hailing. Kids are trapping, fun’s prevailing! Now more eartips, gee that’s better. Muddah, faddah, kindly disregard this letter!
This article by Head Cat Susan Kumpf was originally published in the August 2021 issue of Positively Haywood by Vicinitus.