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Allegheny

$12K Petco grant to support cat sterilization in New Kensington, Arnold

Brian C. Rittmeyer
| Tuesday, July 10, 2018, 2:48 p.m.
Dr. Becky Morrow of Arnold laughs as her cat, Emmy, explores the counter at the new Frankie’s Friends Cat Rescue facility at 730 Fifth Ave., New Kensington, on Monday, Feb. 6, 2017.
Erica Dietz | For the Tribune-Review
Dr. Becky Morrow of Arnold laughs as her cat, Emmy, explores the counter at the new Frankie’s Friends Cat Rescue facility at 730 Fifth Ave., New Kensington, on Monday, Feb. 6, 2017.

The Petco Foundation gave a $12,000 grant to Frankie’s Friends, which the group will use to pay for spaying and neutering stray cats in the New Kensington and Arnold area.

The project includes cats in the area west of Tarentum Bridge Road and Stevenson Boulevard. Residents of that area are asked to contact Frankie’s Friends to report cats in their neighborhood.

“Targeted trap-neuter-release (TNR) is the only way to reduce the number of community (stray) cats as well as homelessness, suffering, and death of thousands of cats each year in our region due to overpopulation,” said Dr. Becky Morrow, a veterinarian and the medical director and president of Frankie’s Friends.

“At least 90 percent of the cats in a colony need to be sterilized at one time for TNR to be at its maximum effectiveness,” she said. “Those cats can reproduce faster than we can get them spayed or neutered otherwise.”

According to Frankie’s Friends, the cats will be humanely trapped, brought to the clinic, and given care including sterilization, rabies vaccination, treatment for fleas and ear mites, and pain medication.

All cats will be “ear tipped” to identify them as having been fixed before being returned to where they came from.

There is no charge to residents who bring stray cats to the clinic; proof of residence will be required.

Owned cats in the area can be brought to Frankie’s Friends for the same services, without the ear tip. Cat owners will get $5 off the regular $55 fee for a female cat, and $40 for a male.

“We can’t do this alone. We need the help of others in the community that care about the welfare of our cats,” clinic Manager Kelly Lassinger said. “As many resources as possible in our community need to be used to practice targeted TNR and monitor the colonies.”

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