SYRACUSE Cat rescuers, animal advocates and veterinarians, along with other animal lovers, will gather on Tuesday, Sept. 9, at the Genesee Grand Hotel in Syracuse to discuss issues surrounding cats as part of the Humane Society of the United States’ symposium, “Rethinking the Cat.”
The free, day-long event, co-sponsored by PetSmart Charities, will provide training in two tracks: “adoptable” cats (i.e., shelter cats and rescues) and “community” cats (the feral cat population).
Brian Shapiro, director of the New York state chapter of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), said the event, one of six being held across the country, is designed to address cat issues in the community.
“We designed these symposia to address the most urgent cat issues in the region — spay/neuter availability, boosting adoptions, addressing community cat populations humanely — and we will be presenting on a wide variety of tools that local agencies and organizations can use to help cats wherever they are,” Shapiro said.
Syracuse was chosen because it is a hub of activity among animal rescuers and similar organizations.
“Central New York, with Syracuse as the hub, has so many active animal advocates and people who really believe so strongly in animal welfare,” Shapiro said. “When we were looking throughout the state for locations, we felt strongly that Syracuse would be a good city to host our New York symposium.”
The symposium will help shelters and rescues address cat issues in the community. Speakers for the event include animal control officers, veterinarians and cat rescuers, including Linda Young of Liverpool, founder of Kitty Corner, a local cat rescue, and president of the CNY Cat Coalition. Sessions will examine ways to resolve conflicts about feral cats (an issue with which Salina residents are very familiar), best practices for cat adoption, reducing unnecessary euthanasia in shelters, trap-neuter-release (TNR) programs and more.