Badge of honor for all rescues.
The facts about ear tips.
An eartip is the universally recognized symbol of a cat who has been spayed or neutered and vaccinated.
Ear-tipping is extremely safe and is performed while the cat is already anesthetized for spay or neuter surgery. There is little or no bleeding involved, and it is not painful to the cat. The ear heals up quickly. An ear tip is actually a source of pride - they will never have to undergo anesthesia or an unnecessary surgery again. In Hawaii, it is also a clear sign to rescues that they are likely microchipped and can more easily be returned to their owner.
Hawaii's is a hard place for animals. So many without homes, ones that have gotten lost, dumped, or moved by a neighbor who wasn't happy that your cat came in their yard. That is why many of the foster groups, and spay/neuter clinics, have opted for mandatory ear tip requirements -- for the good of the cat. We hope you understand.