Real Caregivers of New Jersey: Lia

Lia from Clifton

How did you get started being a colony caregiver?   

My husband and I moved to Clifton from Brooklyn in the fall, and around October we started noticing kittens in our front yard. I noticed that my neighbor Nora was feeding them, so I asked her one day if they were hers and she said no – so we teamed up and started an informal feeding schedule for them. We didn’t collaborate much beyond that although I knew that Nora had made a shelter for them to sleep in at night.

How many cats do you take care of? How many have been TNR’d?

4/4 – although occasionally other random cats will show up for a bite!

      Lia’s colony: Baby Jo, Happy, Runt, & Mask

Tell me about your cats!

They’re four siblings – sisters, in fact – who are around 6 months old at this point. We’ve named them Happy (the friendliest one, she’ll let you pet her and comes to say hi even if you don’t have food). Mask (this name is clearly a product of Covid – named because she has white markings across her face, also pretty friendly and will let you pet her!), Baby Jo (a fluffly lil thing, she is pretty shy but becoming more confident), and Runt (this name seems obvious – she’s the baby of the pack and is super shy, even with her siblings).  They’re always together and spend the majority of their time in Nora’s yard or mine.

             Baby Jo

Happy

                  Runt 

 Mask

What are the best and worst parts of taking care of your crew?

For me, the best part is looking out my window and seeing them playing happily in my backyard – I’m glad to be able to contribute to their well-being and am super lucky to have a next-door neighbor who shares in their care. It’s hard knowing they’re living outside when the weather is bad, but again am very lucky that Nora built them such a safe, wonderful, sturdy, and weather-proof shelter where they can sleep at night!

Do you face opposition from your neighbors? How do you handle it?

Thankfully not – I’ve actually been told that my entire street feeds ferals in some way or another!

Have you ever trapped a cat yourself?

 Yes, the four that I currently take care of.

How did you hear about CPAW? How has CPAW helped you?

In early January of this year, I found out about CPAW on NextDoor and called to see about having the kittens TNRd – and it turns out Nora had also called about the same thing! Karen put the two of us in touch, Amy got us the traps, and one weekend we teamed up to successfully trap all four of them for TNR.We missed them while they were gone, but when they got back, they came home to a brand new and improved cat condo courtesy of Nora!  I joke with her now that word has gotten out about their luxe accommodations because we’ve had a few other ferals show up since then (although not on a consistent basis).

 


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If you or someone you know is a Community Cat Caregiver in New Jersey and would like to be featured on our site, please email amanda@cpawnj.org.

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