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Be a Hero for Hattiesburg's Feline Friends: How You Can Help Transform Lives with TNR

Updated: Jun 18

"There are numerous advantages to TNR that fuel my passion for it." -Alexis Bell

Have you noticed stray cats multiplying in your neighborhood each year and wondered how you can help? 

For Alexis Bell, her mission to help community kitties all began in 2016 when a community cat wandered into her life and quickly bonded with her dogs. Becoming her first feline pet, it sparked a profound love for cats and propelled her to dive into TNR efforts and into fostering kittens, all with the goal of finding them loving homes. Now a dedicated advocate for the feline neighbors who roam Hattiesburg's streets, she works tirelessly to improve the lives of Mississippi kitties through Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) efforts.

Since March 2024, Alexis has helped 71 community cats get fixed through our Healthy Pet Clinic, actively reducing the number of kittens born on the streets each year. This incredible achievement is a testament to the far-reaching impact that kindness can have on our community and how compassion can spark change, creating safer, healthier communities for both the people and cats who live there.

So, why focus on TNR? "There are numerous advantages to TNR that fuel my passion for it," Alexis explains. "One of the primary reasons is the effective management of community cat populations and the prevention of stray kittens. Promoting the overall health of these cats through spaying/neutering has a significant positive impact on their well-being, enabling them to reside peacefully in their surroundings.” 

Despite the vast challenges posed by cat overpopulation in Hattiesburg, Alexis remains unwavering in her devotion and has found Southern Pines Healthy Pet Clinic to be a steadfast ally in her ongoing mission. "Their assistance with community cats has been invaluable to me, making them my go-to clinic for numerous feline friends. Their commitment to making a difference for community cats is what initially drew me to them. Their understanding of TNR's significance and proactive efforts to assist these cats have left a lasting impression," she shares.

As you might imagine, fixing 71 community cats–even at our clinic’s affordable prices–quickly adds up. While Bissell Pet Foundation has generously provided a grant that makes a good portion of our current $25 surgery fees possible for community cats, it does not cover the entirety of the cost. However, the clinic’s Dorothy Ricks Community Cat Fund has been able to help subsidize the cost of each community cat surgery making spay and neuter as affordable as possible for Alexis and other community cat advocates. This fund honors our longtime supporter Dorothy Rick's compassionate spirit for cats in need, and it only exists because of the generosity of our community. And it inspires Alexis and others to continue their vital work, allowing Dorothy's love for these animals to live on through each life this fund touches.

As Alexis reflects on the importance of continuous efforts in animal welfare, she feels very appreciative of our Dorothy Ricks Community Cat Fund, "The Dorothy Ricks memorial fund is a touching tribute to Dorothy's dedication to assisting community cats. It serves as a beautiful way to commemorate her legacy and carry on her mission of supporting community cats." 

Today, we invite you to join Alexis and many others in making a meaningful difference for community cats. Your support is not just crucial, but integral in helping us continue these vital efforts to care for and protect these animals. Together, we can honor legacies and change lives—one cat at a time. It is only with your help that we can continue to make a difference in the lives of community cats through this special fund. Without you, our work–and the work of so many other community cat advocates–would not be possible. 

Will you help us honor Dorothy's memory by donating to the Dorothy Ricks Community Cat Fund so we can continue to provide low-cost services for Hattiesburg community cats? 

Thank you for lending a paw to our community cats and for making a positive, lifesaving difference in their lives!

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