The Feral Friends Project (Trap, Neuter, Return)

Our Feral Friends Project, also known as Trap-Neuter-Return is a critical part of promoting good animal welfare.

What is TNR?

Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), is a humane and effective method of controlling feral cat populations.

On a voluntary basis, our Animal Welfare Team dedicate several evenings each month to humanely trap, neuter and then release feral cats back to their natural colonies. Feral cats that are trapped are assessed visually and if they are under 9 weeks of age, are taken into our care and socialised ready for future adoption. Feral kittens over 9 weeks old are unfortunately unlikely to easily become domesticated due to missing key socialisation periods, so keeping them in care becomes too stressful and are therefore neutered and returned to their coloney site. Each animal is assessed individually to make the best choice in each situation. Following neutering, adult cats are returned back to the site they came from as unfortunately we do not have the resources to release them elsewhere and feral cats find cattery life extremely stressful.

Feral cat colonies can quickly get out of control causing a problem for local wildlife. Feral cats are sadly also more likely to contract serious diseases due to the high population density, sadly dying as a result, so early TNR intervention is crucial for good animal welfare.

By controlling their populations and providing a free health assessment as part of the neutering process, we reduce unnecessary suffering and also help find loving homes for kittens in need.” and “Our Feral Friends Project is highly popular and sadly we can’t always meet the demand.

The population of a feral cat colony can quickly get out of control. Left alone to breed, one male and one female cat can quickly multiply into


after one year


after three years


after five years


after ten years

based on research conducted by Levy and Crawford (2004).

How can I get help with a feral colony?

Our 'Feral Friends' service is highly popular and sadly we can't always meet the demand.

As a small and busy Branch of the RSPCA, our TNR work is carried out voluntarily after hours by our Animal Welfare Team and we are often working across multiple sites at once.

If you are concerned about a feral colony please get in touch using the contact form below, but please be aware we may not be able to get to you immediately, depending on the current number of active feral cat colonies being addressed.

Unfortunately we do not have the resources to relocate or accept adult feral cats into our care, so kindly take note of this before contacting us.

If we cannot help, we can advise you on alternatives such as neutering vouchers.

Would you like to report feral cats?

Please contact us if there are feral or unowned community cats in your area and you need support or advice.