Story and photos by Joanne Maisano

The rain didn’t stop people from coming out to support the Middleburg Humane Foundation on Saturday, February 24 at the “Spay-ghetti and No Balls fundraiser to help reduce the feral cat population and spay and neuter pets for low-income households. Barrel Oak Winery was the perfect venue for such an event, and the wonderful Italian dinner was beautifully catered by Karen Harper-Fuog all to support MHF Community Cats Trap/Neuter/Return program.

John P. Zugschwert, Rose Rogers, and John Zugschwert

John P. Zugschwert, Rose Rogers, and John Zugschwert

As described on Middleburg Humane Foundation’s site: The Trap-Neuter-Return program, or TNR, is an effective and humane method used to stabilize community cat populations. Controlling community cats compassionately can be accomplished with a TNR (trap, neuter, and return) program. TNR stabilizes community cat colonies and improves their lives. The behaviors associated with mating (howling, spraying, and fighting) will lessen or stop altogether. Studies show that the most efficient way to deal with a community cat colony is to TNR.

Julia Trumbo and McCauley Alexiou, tireless workers at MHF

Julia Trumbo and McCauley Alexiou, tireless workers at MHF

Simply trapping cats to eradicate/euthanize is not the answer; it is only a matter of time before new cats will move in. MHF has TNR’d colonies in Culpeper, Fauquier, Loudoun,Orange, Prince William, Rappahannock, and Warren County.

Lisa Ben Dov and Candy Fazakerley, invaluable contributors to the MHF

Lisa Ben Dov and Candy Fazakerley, invaluable contributors to the MHF

Melanie Burch with daughter Helene

Melanie Burch with daughter Helene

MHF actively offers low-cost spay/neuter services for responsible pet owners who cannot afford to spay or neuter. We work closely with each family to help get all the household animals current on vaccines, dewormed and spayed or neutered. ML