New Hope for Feral Cats 

The kindness of a small group of Pinehurst residents has resulted in a humane outcome for an impending feral cat problem.

Oakwood Estate homeowner, Christel van den Heever and her husband, together with another volunteer, Celeste van Schalkwyk, members of the Feral Cat Project Cape Town (, were recently able to successfully trap, neuter and release (TNR), five feral cats on a nearby building site, and effectively reduce current and future numbers.

The operation was assisted by members of the security team on the building site, and with the blessing and co-operation of Garden Cities and its building company PDC, whose General Foreman at the Pinehurst works, Irwille Adonis, went the extra mile, both feeding the cats, and helping with essential co-ordination and extra hours.

Reporting on the event, Christel said:  “Three adorable kittens, the momma cat, a very young expectant kitty, and a strapping, huge ginger cat, have since undergone the necessary procedures, such as neutering (males), spaying (females), deworming, and receiving flea medication. To our immense relief, none of them tested positive for the dreaded FelV (cat leukaemia) – a highly contagious and dreadful disease for cats which required humanely euthanasia.  We have, without a doubt, set them on a path to a happier, healthier life.”

She added that the team is willing to trap more cats over multiple sessions to effectively address the situation and thereafter they would form part of the feeding programme of which she will be the caretaker.

TNR is a humane and effective method of managing feral cat populations. By trapping the cats, spaying or neutering them, and then releasing them back into their territory, further breeding can be prevented and over time the overall population reduced.

About the work carried out by the Feral Cat Project Cape Town (FCP): 

The astonishing impact of uncontrolled breeding can lead to a staggering 420,000 cats from just one unsterilised male and female pair in seven years. Within the period of 2016 to 2023, the FCP sterilized a remarkable total of 25,333 cats. Their tireless efforts rely solely on donations, enabling them to continue saving the cats’ lives.

“Donations, however small, go a long way to help FCP to continue their vital mission of reducing the suffering of these vulnerable feline friends,” says Christel.