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Added Jul 25 2011

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to get a neighbor to stop feeding stray cats? They are now 6-7 and kittens. She thinks it's cute and doesn't understand. Any suggestions or legal ways I can stop her would be greatly appreciated. I have two small girls and we don't need mean cats, fleas, etc. Thanks

  • Portage Patty 30+ year veteran of da hood.

    I had no idea that we had herds of wild cats roaming the Portage Park area.

    Let's start with the obvious have you spoken to your neighbor? Have you told your children to avoid the cats? Fleas ! Aw come on now you need to have contact or at least be near to get fleas.

  • I didn't say herds, I said 6 or 7. I guess I am not sure how many accounts for a herd of cats.

    Yes, we have spoken to her but she thinks it's cute. She doesn't care that they dig under our porch and pee all over our plants and kill them or hiss at us. She likes that she has numerous cats at her back door everytime she comes out to feed them.

    I know, you are right about the fleas and yes my girls stay away but you never know.

    Thanks for your post.

  • I would call a feral cat organization such as Alley Cats, to ask for help. Someone can come out and trap, spay, release. This should at least help with the population of cats and it is the most humane thing that can be done. As for your kids being injured by these wild cats, not too much of a chance since feral cats generally will not attempt to make contact with them.

  • Feats I was a Punk before you were a Punk

    How about Animal Control..311

  • Michelle Mostly lazy

    Treehouse offers a Trap/Neuter/Return option. The kittens are probably not yet feral enough so they could be adopted out or at least be taken off the streets. Either way, 1st, let's get them spayed and neutered so you don't have even MORE kitties running around.

  • Alderman Tim Cullerton 38th Ward 38th Ward Alderman

    If you would like, send her name and address to my website at i will call her and ask her stop feeding the cats and if she continues our Ward Superintendent can issue a fineable citation. People mean well, but the rats eat anything they can find.

  • Michelle Mostly lazy

    Ald Cullerton: That link is giving me an error "If you are seeing this page instead of the site you expected, please contact the administrator of the site involved. (Try sending an email to <webmaster@domain>.) Although this site is running cPanel, WebHost Manager, and Apache software it almost certainly has no other connection to cPanel Inc. or the Apache Group. Please do not send mail about this site or its contents to cPanel Inc. or the Apache Group."

  • Michelle Mostly lazy

    Also, I'm curious as to what the citation would be for? IE: what law is she breaking?

  • Alderman Tim Cullerton 38th Ward 38th Ward Alderman

    Sorry, I put in an extra "dot" - it should read: You can also use: I believe the citation would fall under the public health nuisance ordinance, Chapter 7-28 of the Municipal Code.

  • Peggy,
    I see your point but honestly the cats are good for the rat situation around here,

  • John Long time resident Cragin area!

    Actually it is totally legal for this person to feed the stray cats and it is not considered a public health nuisance I tried that before!! You cant stop this person believe me I know how annoying it seems but Susie is correct it will help balance the rat population which the city is already having trouble with! However if you want to help stop the stray homeless kittens from popping up and having even more kittens I recommend if it is that bothersome to you Peggy there is a program called TNR (Trap Neuter/Spay and Return) which is totally legal but it will cost you a few bucks for each cat you trap to be spayed or neutered! Or you can talk to your neighbor (communication is key) about it! Tree House Humane Society here in Chicago along with Paws and Anti-Cruelty has alot of info if you want here is some on this website! or

  • Inactive user

    i am one of the people that feeds the strays . i cannot find it in my heart to let them starve. they also have shelter in a part of my yard.they know they are safe in my yard. i also have taken in a lovely cat that was left to fend for himself on the streets and had no notion of how to do it. he is now a very lovely house cat.
    if this really bothers people, the PAWS people will help with sterilizing the ferals. they also have traps available to help catch them to assist with this.
    the bigger problem is that a number of people do not care for their animals. owners have a responsiblity to spay/neuter their pets. anyone who thinks differently has never been to the city pound on western ave. people who persist in the notion that animals need to have litters should be required to assist with the euthanizing of the unwanted/strays at the city pound.
    feral colonies can and do exist in other places and are cared for by the residents of the neighborhood. you can read about feral colonies on line.
    the cats help keep the rat population under control (which is very out of control at this time all over the city).

  • Inactive user

    I feel like if Peggy Lambert and Niptu are both here they can work this out on their own. It seems like each has a good sense of what the other is concerned about.

    Peggy, I would use a spray bottle to dissuade the cats from my yard and family and otherwise leave them alone.

    Good luck.

  • Michelle Mostly lazy

    Peggy, if you and/or your neighbor are willing to trap them using PAWS or Treehouse TNR program, I will donate $100 to the cost of getting them spayed/neutered. Contact me at my firstname dot Buchecker at

  • Alderman Tim Cullerton 38th Ward 38th Ward Alderman

    Thanks Michelle! I would be more than happy to match your generous offer! Contact my office at or call (773) 545-3838.

  • This comment has been removed by EveryBlock staff.
  • It is perfectly legal. As a matter of fact, Cook County will issue assistance to individuals registering a feral cat colony that they take care of. Plus, Animal Control will not remove feral cat colonies. They will only remove an animal deemed dangerous to the public. There are are many spay/neuter and release programs in Chicago that were formed due to the policies set in place by the City of Chicago with regard to animal removal....PAWS has a great one. My father and several of his neighbors take care of a feral cat colony in Portage Park. The cats have never been aggressive toward anyone. As a matter of fact, he adopted one of the feral cats he was taking care of. A side note to Alderman Cullerton: Although my father's alderman is John Arena and you have no say over that particular area of Portage Park, I must advise you that, if you attempted to have that specific citation issued to any Chicago resident, it would be thrown out at a hearing. Your advice was heartless and incorrect.

  • Inactive user

    Niptu while you may think it controls the rat population it kills the bird population at a greater pace. And yes they can cause other people's lawns to have fleas. How do you think dogs get fleas in the first place. I was very into animal rescue and I am all for helping cats and dogs. 2 of my 3 dogs are rescues.

    go to CH 10, Arcticle IV feral cats

    Alderman it is not a city ordinance but a county one.

    go to CH 10, Arcticle IV feral cats

    In cook county you must register your feral cat colony. You must also spay/neuter them and make sure they have their rabies shot. You must also give them ear tipping where the ear is snipped so others know they are neuter/spayed and do not waste their time trying to catch them. If you do not do this you are basically breaking the law.

    I personally feel if you cannot keep them indoors then it is more human to put them down.

  • Inactive user

    @Suzi that was disrespectful. Was that necessary? Alderman Cullerton has done more for me in the 45th Ward to date the Arena has. He is very helpful, a fine gentleman and a very respected one at that. I cannot say the same about my Alderman John Arena. But that is a whole other issue. You should also google the name Cullerton and learn something. Did you know his cousin Tom Allen is now a circuit court judge? Did you know another one of his family members is a senator and not only is he a senator he is the President of the Illinois Senate and his nickname is Mr. Wonderful because he is so well like? Did you know the Cullerton Family has run the 38th ward since the Great Chicago Fire? The Cullerton family is very respected in this city, this state for that matter and this man is nothing but kind! Often times Suzi is respect that gets you a lot further then a title. Just food for thought.

    Staying on topic: Just as there are animal advocates who will feed cats there are those that will catch them too. That has nothing to do with being an Alderman. All it takes is one person who disagrees with the cat colony and they will be wiped out. Patty's asking for help is the right thing to do, but as you can see there are also those who would rather poison them with aspirin and be done with it as the poster @case said.

  • This comment has been removed by EveryBlock staff.
  • Inactive user

    @case my sister has a barn full of feral cats in Indiana that really never leave the barn area. All of them are altered and all are registered as feral cats. There are people like her who are more than happy to have them as barn cats. I also have my share at my lake house in Indiana in my barn they keep the chipmunks and the mice in order. But mine are not feral they are all social rejects from CAC that nobody wanted because they not so pretty or lost an eye etc. I am not a cat hater, however in my opinion in the city a cat outside is a dead cat. I live by the Kilpatrick train tracks and we often see coyote here at night up on the tracks. I seldom see a stray cat wandering our streets. Evolution.

  • Portage Patty 30+ year veteran of da hood.

    Can't let the Cullerton history lesson go without correction.

    In 1871 I believe what is now the 38th ward was part of Jefferson Township. The Cullerton's have been in the city council since 1871 back in the days of Hinky Dink and Bathhouse John running the 1st Ward. Back when there was real money to be made being a public servant.

  • Truly feral cats really will not come near people, so I wouldn't worry about them coming near your kids. Also, the house I used to live in had mice, but after my neighbor started feeding the stray cats, I never saw another mouse. Also, my neighbor regularly trapped them and got them neutered. Maybe your neighbor already does this, and you just don't know? In any event, the city is cutting down on rat abatement services, so I say let the cat lady be.

  • Alderman Tim Cullerton 38th Ward 38th Ward Alderman

    Hey folks, I don't hate cats...but if you think for one minute that they are helping to control the rat population, I'll be more than happy to spend a day driving the ward with you to show you firsthand what we are up against. The rats eat everything from cat food to dog feces and take my word for it, they are taking over with a vengeance!
    Suz, the simple fact is that when people throw bread out for the birds and leave food out for stray cats, they contribute to the rat population. If you lived next door to a property overrun with rats (like many of the people who call my office do), you might think twice before leaving food out in your yard for stray cats.
    And Portage Patty, FYI, they named a street after Ed Cullerton (20th Street) but not after Hinky Dink or Bath House John LOL!
    We are all in this together and we all have to try to see things from the other guy's point of view! (Me too)!
    Have a good night all!

  • Inactive user

    I applaud those who actually goes through the steps to become come registered with the county in an effort to help manage and reduce the feral cat colonies in the city through management and sterilization. Anyone who is interested to go through the steps the information and application is here: it is a lot of work but there is also a lot of support available as well.

    @Peggy if you can catch those kittens or want help catching them I can help you. I would be find rescues that can take them and arrange that before we caught them . Another EB reader and I recently caught a bunch of chickens roaming in the 38th ward and took them to rescue. That sure raised some eyebrows in Old Irving Park as we were chasing.

    Alderman what the heck is going on in your ward? Wild chickens, feral cats, rats taking over...... oye..... I am waiting to see a goat or cow next. LOL!

  • Martha Hack petrealtor , 42 year resident of Albany Park

    Thanks, Jaxx! People need to be educated on the trap and sterilization programs as well as what happens when we discard our helpless and unfixed animals out into the street because they are"moving", "having a baby", and the bs list goes on and on!! Pet Dumpers are to blame for these situations!!! These people should not breed either!!!!

  • Those of you with children should consider yourself lucky and not use your parenthood as an excuse for bad behavior. We tried to have children and never succeeded. I spend every day caring for and parenting children many are too "busy" to care for or about. Shall we stop emotionally feeding them?

    If it is now going to be considered a neighborhood "sin" to care for animals, I'm out. I'll go live and pay taxes somewhere neighbors respect each other's right to quality of life. Tired of the Mom and Dad "Supercitizens" who feel they have exclusive rights to our kindness. We don't complain when you block traffic dropping your children off at school (We always walked. Imagine!) your kids run around in our yards, blow off firecrackers at animals, have late night teen sessions in alleys, ring our doorbells and run away, stand in front of our windows staring, waving and smiling when we ask them to move on and so much more (and worse) of which parents apparently have no idea. I'd say, aside from the useful comments about trap/spay/neuter, leave this one alone.

    "The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated” - Gandhi

  • Inactive user

    I can't believe how many threads I was following have become dominated by irrational, angry people. It is depressing to see.

    As for all the love for the feral cats . . . if you are following the law with regard to a colony, super. If not, you are creating a nuisance. If you poison cats for whatever reason, you are a jerk and need to read up on how things like aspirin kill cats. Very gruesome.

    Don't bother responding, 'cause I will not be following this. It's like having a conversation with the crazy cat lady on the Simpsons.

  • Martha Hack petrealtor , 42 year resident of Albany Park

    When we teach our children to be kind & care for animals, they usually become more caring & empathic adults! Abusers usually start with animals and go from there. As the CAPS Beat Facilitator for Beat 1723 , a memeber of the Court Advocacy Program for the 17th District, as well as a board member for FFRAA, I help both people and animals and advocate for victims of both species. I am going on a court case tomorrow against members of a gang that were involved in a Pit Bull Ring & animal abuse in beat 1723. This same gang that was invloved in the shooting for 2 young girls in Avondale Park in June. Imagine how these guys might have turned out if they were tought to respect & care for all LIFE when they were children!

  • Amen and thank you for your good work, Martha.

  • I'm pleased that so many people know about Trap-Neuter-Return to control feral cat populations humanely. Not feeding them doesn't solve any problem. I am a registered colony caregiver for 12 colonies in Pilsen and I have never seen a rat down there. Only racoons and possums (and many residents want rid of those too!).

    I wish Alderman Cullerton would also advocate TNR as a real solution. The problem originates with unspayed/unneutered pets being let outside to breed. Those kittens born on the street can be easily rescued. The feral ("wild") adults are not aggressive to people - they are afraid and will run away if given the chance. They will just move elsewhere if not fed. If trapped and removed (which is what animal control will do), more will just move in ("vaccum effect"). The best way to TNR through PAWS or Treehouse or Chicagoland Stray Cat Coalition. The number of cats will slowly decrease. I've seen it happen in Pilsen over the last 5 years!

  • Inactive user

    @janey it is never a sin to care for animals. Anyone who does obviously has a big heart. The sad reality of our society is everything including children have become throw away. Since you bring it up .... less and less people are caring for those children who have been discarded. Foster home applications are down 18% in the state of IL and adoptions are down even more. With the Catholic Charities being eliminated from the foster home pool due to their position on gay marriages it will decrease even further. Thank you for all you do in helping children! Perhaps you will consider fostering as well. Organizations like UCAN are actively seeking more foster homes.

    My point is people need to start thinking more about cause and affect in all regards.... when they discard a pet, a child, even a plastic bottle or cigarette flicked out a car window. It is all about creating awareness. I am sure many people were not aware feral cats are killing our bird population for example. knowing this may give them another perspective and realize the importance of managing a colony or even eliminating it humanly. Understanding bird conservation means understanding ecology. Wild birds are an integral part of the ecosystem and serve many important purposes I can not say the same for feral cats - sadly.

  • Inactive user

    @TNRAdvocate it is all about educating people! This is just a step in the right direction! I would be happy to pick up literature for both the 38th Ward and the 45th ward offices about the programs so it is readily available to them for their constituents. I use to run a non for profit organization called Pet Connections. We pulled and rescued cats/dogs from high kill shelters to take to rescue or rehome. I had to shut it down after having a child who needed my attention more. Now that he is older we are becoming more involved in pet rescue again. Thanks for all you do. I know it takes a daily commitment, as well as a financial commitment.

  • Thanks for all your worthy, thoughtful comments, Jaxx. You are correct to uphold the findings on these colonies effect on bird populations. The best answer, of course, is prevention which is what TNRA is all about. Let's hope folks will consider providing real homes as well.

  • Alderman Tim Cullerton 38th Ward 38th Ward Alderman

    It's never to late to teach an old dog like me about new tricks. I would welcome more info about TNR, and as I said before, I don't dislike cats. But, is there some way to feed the cats without leaving the food out to attract rats, skunks, possums and racoons? I don't think that there are many people out there who truly dislike the cats as much as they don't want to attract or add to the rodent population.

  • Hi Alderman Cullerton, in a properly managed colony of feral cats, the colony caretaker should feed and monitor the feeding and then remove the food to avoid attracting rodents and raccoons. The caretakers also needs to be actively working to spay/neuter/vaccinate the cats in their colony in order to be in compliance with the Cook County Feral Cat Ordinance. Not always an easy task, but organizations like Tree House - - can help with trapping training, and free and heavily discounted spay/neuter surgery packages. While feral cat colonies cannot eradicate rodent populations, they do act as an effective deterrent against them. Thanks for your interest in this issue.

  • I know this thread has been long and not without some drama that was unnecessary, but I do thank all of you and especially the kind neighbor (Michelle with Mickey as her picture) and Alderman Cullerton for offering to help financially with their donations of $100.00. I really do appreciate all the information and feel bad for the people that want to poison the cats. That is not my intent. I just want them to stop using my backyard as their litterbox and breding ground.

  • Michelle Mostly lazy

    Peggy, you can try using a "Scat Cat" type spray such as

Hello, neighbor. This thread was closed due to violations of the EveryBlock community guidelines, which intend to keep discussions informative, friendly and respectful.

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