International feline charity launches new individual cat welfare award

Feline charity, International Cat Care is presenting new awards to recognise individuals’ outstanding contributions to the welfare of cats.

This year the awards will be presented to David Yates and Melvyn Driver who have both contributed hugely to the management of unowned cat populations.

In the feline arena, working in cat welfare with unowned cats, and especially with feral cats, can be extremely challenging. There are many difficulties in dealing with large numbers of animals, especially handling them safely without harm to people, whilst minimising stress to the cats. Much thought and support has gone into working with stray dogs, but as is often the case, cats come a poor second.

David and Melvin are dedicated to providing practical solutions with the welfare of cats in mind, as well as the health of those who work with them. They have both contributed to making the complex procedure of capture, handling, anaesthetising, housing, recovery, care and husbandry of unowned cats as effective and humane as possible.

David Yates

Perhaps best known for his anaesthesia and early neutering work, David has also made huge contributions to feral cat neutering programmes in Manchester where he is hospital director of the RSPCA Greater Manchester Animal Hospital. For a charity like International Cat Care, it is always important to back up action with evidence and to share the information – David has collected data from thousands of neuterings, worked on anaesthetic protocols and made information available to others to use and learn from. His findings and advice are now used worldwide. He is highly knowledgeable and has given unwavering support and investment in personal time to many cat charities including International Cat Care. 

Melvyn Driver

Anyone anywhere who has ever been involved in a trap, neuter and return programmes for street cats or has had a difficult cat to restrain in a veterinary clinic, will have used equipment that Melvyn Driver has designed, created and refined. When feral cats are neutered for population control, they need to be captured safely and with minimum stress and physical trauma. The handlers need to be able to work quickly and quietly and be kept safe from cats which will be stressed and impossible to control by manual handling. Melvyn’s traps and squeeze back cages revolutionised welfare workers’ ability to capture and neuter feral cats, enabling the trap, neuter and return programmes which now run worldwide to provide alternative ethical and effective solutions to poisoning or gassing cats. He has also provided huge and generous support to many welfare organisations, including International Cat Care.

Melvyn Driver is director of MDC Exports. He originally developed a range of animal control and pet products under his company name of Mikki Pet Products. He later sold this company but kept the work with animal handling equipment as MDC Exports. MDC Exports develops and manufactures animal handling equipment that is used by local authorities and welfare organisations all over the world.




Press enquiries:        

Claire Matthews T: (01903) 821550 E:

Maria Boiling T: (01903) 821550 E:


Notes to editors:

About International Cat Care

The International Cat Care vision:

All cats, owned and unowned, are treated with care, compassion and understanding.

The International Cat Care mission:

To engage, educate and empower people throughout the world to improve the health and welfare of cats by sharing advice, training and passion


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