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Stray Cat, Stray Kittens, What should you do? Animal Abuse, Who Can Help….?

First few questions…

What area are you in?  This information is for persons in the GTA ( Greater Toronto Area )   Some of the basic information is helpful & universal. 

Is the cat in distress- ie bleeding, limping, sick ( runny nose, runny eyes ) missing fur, disoriented, vomiting

If so please call Toronto Animal Services ( or your local animal control/services) IMMEDITAELY  Each city has their own animal control ie google “ Your City, Animal Control”

Each division has emergency services FREE OF CHARGE

This animal cannot speak for itself, you need to be their voice.  Please provide adequate information to the dispatch ( address, description ) .


Suspicions Of Animal Cruelty/Neglect/Hoarding

Do you suspect or have visibly seen your neighbor, friend, family member or someone abusing an animal? This could be physically, emotionally ( yelling constantly) lack of food/care, on going injuries etc

Please Contact your local SPCA/Animal Control- if you can document the incident ( pictures, witnesses ) this will help the animal.  It does not help the animal to remain anonymous.  A lot of cases will not go any further than a visit without witnesses. 

If you witness acts of cruelty please call 911 immediately.  The Police will involve the SPCA or Animal Control. 

Do you suspect a neighbor or someone you know is hoarding animals?   Smell is your first indication.  A person who does “ rescue work” is always conscience about smell and actually afraid of “ Animal Control”.  This person usually works himself or herself into the ground cleaning around the clock to maintain the animals.

There is a huge difference between rescuing animals and hoarding.  People who rescue are looking to “ re-home” the animals they bring in.  Hoarders just keep bringing in and in and in.  The animals in most cases are neglected, sick, under weight, flea infested and not spayed/neutered.  Thus meaning without help the situation just keeps getting worse. 

Though some of the animals may face euthanasia or being taken to a shelter they deserve quality of life.  I have first hand been in a hoarders home on multiple occasions and I honestly cannot describe it. 

There are lots of nice “ rescue groups” who rescue animals from shelters ( I’m one of them ) so their fate may not be death. 

A Friendly Cat Has Shown up in my Back Yard

This could easily be a neighbor’s cat but never assume.  These days we don’t know our neighbors.  If you can take the cat to ANY vet this in their best interest.  The vet will scan the cat to see if he/she is micro-chipped.  This is FREE OF CHARGE.

If the kitty is chipped the vet or you can contact the owner for them to reclaim their cat. 

Best situation is for you to keep the cat in your care until the owner contacts you. 

You should also contact your local Animal Services stating you have found a cat with the following description in this area ETC

Posting online you have found a kitty is entering dangerous waters.  I’d suggest to “ search online” or keep your eyes open locally for posters.  If the owner truly is searching you will find something.  Otherwise your possibly inviting persons with the wrong motivates. 

Legally if no owner comes forward in ten days ( Toronto/Mississauga) you can keep the cat if you desire.  If you are not looking to become a pet owner please do the right thing and surrender the cat to a shelter, adopt them to a friend/family member/advertise on line ( ask a small adoption fee ).

Lots of Strays/Feral Cats ( colony of cats )

The services below are offered to you FREE OF CHARGE, please read further. 

These cats tend to reside -behind a restaurants, industrial areas, low income city housing, alleys etc

These cats are not approachable, you cannot touch them, they run away once you get within a few feet, keep multiplying etc

Welcome to a colony of cats.  Did you know without intervention their life will be a miserable 2 years at the most? 

The colony will multiply constantly.  What are 10 could be become 25 in a few months.  Most will starve to death, freeze to death, suffer abuse etc

This is where you can step in; it’s much easier with community involvement.

Spay/Neuter is vital, Shelters, feeding stations. 

If you live in the city of Toronto, please contact

You will have to attend a “ TNR Work Shop” . These are held on weekends throughout the city. The cost is $10.00.  You will be taught how to “ live trap”, speak to professionals, learn about the resources available to you, be given a information package on live traps, trapping tips and so much more.

Once you have completed the “ TNR Work Shop” you need to contact your local Animal Services.  There are 4 locations in Toronto. 

You will need to go into the location & get the paper work to “ register you colony”.  You will also need to register your colony with the Toronto Feral Cat Project. 

Once you have submitted the paper work to Toronto Animal Services, you can book a time/date for the officer to come and verify your cat colony. 

Once the colony is verified, you will need to book spay/neuter appointments. 


Please give yourself adequate time to trap.  You can rent live traps from Animal Control as well, please call 416-338-6281, these can be picked up at Central Region 2696 Eglinton Ave. W.  You can borrow them for 1 week at a time.  You can also purchase live traps at Canadian Tire, on line, La Barron etc

Spay/Neuter Appointments take place week days only at

East Region
821 Progress Ave.
(Hwy. 401 & Markham Rd.)

Drop off 8:30am- pick up early afternoon or 4-5 pm. 

The Toronto Humane Society also offers spays/neuters for feral cats on Sundays. 

Please contact them for further information. 

If these cats/kittens are sick it is your responsibility to provide medical care.  These programs are strictly for spays/neuters .The animal will not be provided with medical care if taken to a spay/neuter appointment. 

Once again the spay/neuter program via Toronto Animal Services/Toronto Humane Society are FREE OF CHARGE. 

These Spay/Neuter Appointments are for FERAL CATS only.  Your cat or friend’s cats do not qualify.  The vets will know the difference immediately once the cat is brought to the clinic and you will be disqualified from using the program.

You are expected to maintain the colony of cats ie feeding/watering/shelters on a regular basis. 

Cat Rescues are bombarded with feral colonies of cats.  We would love to help you but the most we can do is provide you with advice.  We cannot provide medical care or doing the legwork. 

Do you think you have found a colony of feral cats?

You will see shelters, feeding stations, the cats will be “ ear tipped” ( missing a corner of their ear).  It’s a universal sign of spay/neuter. 

Please leave the colony as it.  It’s being taken care of.