Options for Nuisance Cats

They may be wild or friendly or something in between, but we can all agree that many can become a nuisance. Below are your options on what can be done.


Trap/capture any unwelcomed cats and take to your local animal shelter


  1. Takes care of your issue right away for that specific cat
  2. Most often costs little to nothing depending on available services provided by your local shelter and equipment you may already have
  3. There is a chance the cat is owned and is able to be returned to it’s owner


  1. This ONLY takes care of this specific cat, not any others who will likely also show up, ultimately not solving the problem in the long run
  2. Most likely the cat is at a high risk of euthanasia depending on your local shelter’s policies, procedures, and available resources
  3. Most likely the cat is not owned and is either wild (a.k.a feral) or a friendly neighborhood cat and will be unnecessarily kept in a cage for 3 to 7 days to wait out the legal hold period shelters are required to abide by therefore increasing it’s chances of becoming sick and being euthanized
  4. If the cat is owned and returned to it’s owner, the cat may return to your property. Your local ordinances would determine what options are available to you in these circumstances.

The Rushville Animal Shelter will only accept animals from Rush County residents. It is free to surrender, owned or stray. We only require ID and proof of residency. We do not euthanize for time or space, but will for behavior and medical reasons. Feral cats are at the highest risk of euthanasia for us since they require barn placement which are hard to come by on a regular basis.

The Rushville Animal Shelter will loan out traps at no cost to Rush County residents. Typically there is a longer wait time for available traps during summer months due to demand.

The Rushville Animal Shelter provides trap service ONLY within the city limits of Rushville. This would involve us placing traps on Monday, checking at least once a day and removing all traps on Fridays due to limited staffing on weekends.

For all other county residents, contact your county animal shelter for services available to you.


Trap, Neuter, and Return (TNR) to your area


  1. Reduces the numbers of cats being born each year significantly
  2. Reduces the most annoying behaviors of nuisance cats: fighting, mating, and marking
  3. Will stabilize the population of cats in the area, leading to less new cats showing up and a reduction in population over time as the cats roam away or pass away.
  4. Cats with the left ear tip are less likely to be euthanized if they make it to a shelter. Many animal control departments have the policy to return the cat immediately to the area found.
  5. Will stabilize the diseases most commonly found in feral or community cat populations, decreasing the chances of spreading disease to owned, stray, or shelter animals.
  6. Will stabilize or reduce rodent and other wildlife populations in the area


  1. Could cost time and money. Some communities or shelters have trap neuter return programs that may reduce the time or cost associated with this option.
  2. Does not eliminate all nuisance problems from cats
  3. May take months to years to see the benefits, depending on the number of cats involved

The Rushville Animal Shelter on occasion may have grant or donation money to offer Rush County residents to help reduce the cost associated with trap neuter return. Call us to inquire if there is a current option.

The Rushville Animal Shelter typically does not assist in trapping and transporting cats for trap neuter return. We may help under very specific circumstances.

The Rushville Animal Shelter does lend out traps for free to all Rush County residents. Typically there is a longer wait time during summer months due to demand.

The clinic we recommend for neuter/spay of feral or community cats for Rush or surrounding counties is the Low Cost Spay Neuter Clinic transport as it is the most convenient option. For more information on the cost and trap neuter return program, click here.