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  #1  
Old April 16th, 2012, 07:57 AM
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Cats are rats -- ask the songbirds

Interesting article - seems to me things are changing for domestic outdoor cats.

http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opi...147422005.html

I'd be VERY curious to know how members feel about licensing cats in the identical way we do for dogs.
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  #2  
Old April 16th, 2012, 09:05 AM
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I think cats should be licensed so if a cat gets out accidentally, it's more easily identifiable and is reunited with its owner more quickly. It would also encourage owners to spay and neuter their cats if the fee for licensing is dependent upon reproductive status.

But I don't think it will help the problem. People who have outside cats will either not license them or leave the tags off them and things will continue as they have. Wildlife would still be at risk from the cats that will remain outdoors. Licensing did not eliminate the dog overpopulation problem, and I doubt it would for cats.

If the licensing fees are directed back into the animal control system for either facilities or education, though, there could be a very large benefit in the long run...
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Old April 16th, 2012, 11:06 AM
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I have always advocated for licensing for cats. At least then they may start getting treated with the same measure of respect dogs are. And yes, I'm still on that bandwagon.
I don't have time to read the article right now. I don't imagine I'll be too damned impressed when I do.
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Old April 16th, 2012, 11:34 AM
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Strong sentiments for an article you have not read.
I could be very wrong but I thought most people would actually appreciate the article.

Personally....I too am 100% in favour of licensing cats in an identical way to dogs. I do not think domestic pet cats should be allowed to roam freely in the same way that dogs are not allowed to roam freely. I also agree w/14+ that mandatory licensing WILL change the perceived "value" of a cat in the minds of some people.

From the article "In 2007, Calgary put in place mandatory cat licensing, and required that house cats be kept indoors or leashed when outside. Since then, 50,000 cats have been licensed and the number of euthanized strays has been cut in half."

That is VERY encouraging to hear imo. Of course it may not solve the problem completely, but 50% reduction in euthanasia....that's very very very good.
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  #5  
Old April 16th, 2012, 12:29 PM
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In Medicine Hat, Alberta, cats are licensed, and have been for several years.

Even if adopting one, the licence fee is added to the adoption to make sure it is done.

I don't mind, if it helps to recover an animal faster then great. Mine do not go outside at all, and don't seem interested in sneaking out, but I sure would want them returned if they did. They are also microchipped.

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Old April 16th, 2012, 03:32 PM
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Strong sentiments for an article you have not read.

Not really. Actually it's a pretty mild sentiment. A strong one would be "I don't imagine I'll be too "effing" impressed when I do." But I only use that word when I am severely ticked off.

I could be very wrong but I thought most people would actually appreciate the article.
It's got nothing to do with "appreciating" the article. It's got to more with the perception the title of the article gives. This discussion has been had before here by someone who came on and called cats rats. If I have time I may go looking for the thread and pin it here for reference. If I'm not mistaken that thread was locked because of the feelings it aroused.

Back on track - when I see an article titled such as this one I suppose my hackles go up. I wasn't far wrong. It is the same as hundreds of other articles I've read. Not much blame being placed where it should be - with the owners. Not much said about responsible spay/neutering. Would have been an excellent venue to spout that. It was finally mentioned waaaayy down in the what? second last paragraph. When it is mentioned it is to say politicians back off when it comes to discussing the exact things that need to be discussed because of the minefield. Now wouldn't it be nice to find a politician who would actually do the job they are getting those outrageous salaries for and venture into that minefield? Maybe that's what is needed.

We need mandatory s/n of cat. I've said before cats need to be leashed or at the very least contained in a safe environment when they are outdoors. That is not for the safety of the songbird. It's for their own safety. We need licensing of all cats. I wonder if the SPCA is going to be willing to hire more officers to go around to the farmers and tell them to s/n all their cats. My guess would be no. They don't have the money and the government is not about to hand it over to them.

From personal experience, I have a few cats . Some of them live in an enclosed area where there are also trees and ummm, birds. Amazingly even with them living in such close proximity to each other in a years time there may be two birds caught and eaten by these cats. I know when there is because I find the feathers of the bird the next day. Not a half eaten bird. My cats use the whole bird. Nothing goes to waste. Now why does that not jive with the numbers claimed in the article? I don't think my cats are any different than the rest of them.

What would be marvelous to read is an article that might make people sit up and take notice of the issues surrounding all of the millions of homeless cats in the world. It would be nice to read that someone is finally taking a stand and doing something about it. Find an article like that and I would be more than impressed when I read it.

** Ooops, nothing goes to waste except for about two dozen or so feathers....
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Last edited by 14+kitties; April 16th, 2012 at 03:43 PM.
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  #7  
Old April 16th, 2012, 04:10 PM
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I agree with licensing cats,but of course most importantly spay/neuter.
People have to stop looking at that cute little kitten,take him home on a whim,only to dump him outside when he is grownup,not a cute little plaything anymore.

My own cats as everyone know come outside with us,are not even interested in exploring what's behind that fence,as for catching birds,I know they would love to but never manage too.

We have about 3 roaming cats in my neighborhood,I know where they live..one of them(since an indoor cat)would lay under my birdfeeders and caught a few birds,that he brought home.
I went over and spoke to the owner,I just did not want him to use my backyard for his hunting ground,my birdfeeders to be a trap,after that and him running away,being picked up by Humane Society,he is now an inside cat.

There should be no difference between cats and dogs,cats are intelligent,have feelings,are very loving and only ask to be loved and cared for,just like dogs.

Thousands of cats are killed every year,shelters are overdcrowded with cats,it just has to stopbut I have a feeling,just like the ignorant people who don't care,our politicians are the same.
After all,here in Ontario,we kill dogs,just for being a certain breed,why would they care about little cats.
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Old April 16th, 2012, 04:19 PM
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okay then 14+ - I guess I get more excited than you do when I feel the real beginnings of a shift in perception. This is the 3rd story on this topic that I have heard in just 2 weeks.

For me this story is a positive thing. For me the meaningful "perception" is not the headline....which is only designed to get people to read the rest of the article. I let these things go because I see them for what they are...a simple hook to get you to read on.

The fact that we are talking about this at all....when this would have never even been published just a few years ago is good. Obviously - we have a long long way to go. That doesn't mean that slow progress is bad. All progress is good imo.

Many thousands of cats in Calgary and other cities are not dying because of this change in perception, so if a provocative headline gets people to read an article, I have no problem with it. In fact if more of these provocative headlines make it to the news, it means the change is happening at a faster rate. I can live with a provocative headlines if the story supports and advances something that I believe in.....and I do believe that's all I have to say about that...
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Old April 16th, 2012, 05:58 PM
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Originally Posted by marko View Post
okay then 14+ - I guess I get more excited than you do when I feel the real beginnings of a shift in perception. This is the 3rd story on this topic that I have heard in just 2 weeks.

For me this story is a positive thing. For me the meaningful "perception" is not the headline....which is only designed to get people to read the rest of the article. I let these things go because I see them for what they are...a simple hook to get you to read on.
Ahh you see, that's just it. I know a whole lot of cat haters that will take one look at that headline, not bother to read the rest of it, and tout it as the new "truth". That's my perception. Seeing as I live with this "truth" every day, hear it at work constantly, have to bite my tongue so I don't get fired when a customer starts talking about drowning the little "rats" when they are born, etc, etc, etc, I think I'm entitled to my opinion. I don't see this as a positive move in the right direction at all. Just one more article that birders can use to have the cats that are "attacking their birds" killed.

I suppose one more time we will just have to agree to disagree. And that will be all I have to say on the matter as well.
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Old April 16th, 2012, 07:11 PM
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It is interesting, Marko. Cats are required to be registered here in Australia and now every kitten(and pup) advertised for sale must be microchipped . Hefty fines for unregistered animals and our Shire's Ranger DOES go farm to farm and door to door in town looking for unregistered animals. So, I guess I don't understand why they are concerned about public outrage over licencing.
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Old April 17th, 2012, 07:58 AM
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in good old new jersey cats are "free to roam" and its illegal to feed them and no there are NO free tnr's. Although the animal control will pick then up and kill them per request THEY ACO DOES GET A LOT OF PRESS THOUGH WHEN A POOR COW GETS AWAY FROM THE SLAUGHTER HOUSE and gets to go live on a farm someplace in the country
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Old April 17th, 2012, 10:35 AM
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VICTORIA -- Canada's 7.9 million house cats are the focus of intensifying public disquiet. There are those who loudly protest catastrophic predation by cats on wildlife and demand cat control. Others vociferously oppose any sort of cat constraint owing to their unique and iconic status that should exempt them from municipal oversight.
The controversy is pitting neighbour against neighbour.
At issue are the results of many studies confirming that more than two-thirds of house cats are permitted to prowl outdoors. Their hunting activities have been documented, confirming they destroy about 110 million songbirds each year in Canada and the United States, roughly 10 per cent of the total figure in Canada. But accumulating information suggests the actual mortality could be substantially higher still.
A 1987 study in the U.K. by Peter Churcher and John Lawton indicated on average, each house cat at large kills roughly four songbirds a year. That figure, which has since been substantiated, indicates the cat-caused songbird loss in Canada could be as high as 20 million a year.

Really that many???? I highly doubt it. In my lifetime of owning cats, I've only had one birder, the rest have been mousers, as getting birds is a very refined talent for cats.

Several regional and local studies indicate songbird mortality due to cat predation can be very high. Stanley Temple at the University of Wisconsin documented that house cats on the loose destroy 19 million songbirds annually in Wisconsin. Some newer estimates of the total North American songbird toll due to cat predation could top three billion annually.

See comment above. I have seen more hawks get birds at my feeders than cats, an I have 4 that go outside

According to the Humane Society of the United States, outdoor time is not a prerequisite of cat happiness.

I have to disagree with this. I supervise my cats outside (as ALL cats should be), and they go crazy when I get home from work because they get to go outside. This has held true for all the cats I've had in my adult life (all supervised)

Several studies have shown well-fed house cats are just as destructive of wildlife as are hungry cats. Research indicates this is because cats hunt largely for amusement. Neurological studies have confirmed hunting for food and hunting for sport are activities controlled in cats by different and independent parts of the feline brain.

This is true, hunting is a cat's game, just like humans have hockey, biking, etc. It is stimulation for them

Despite irrefutable evidence confirming the scope of wildlife mortality caused by cats on the prowl, there is widespread denial by cat-fanciers, according to evidence accumulated by the National Wildlife Federation.
Some cat owners claim they allow their cats outdoors to help rid the neighbourhood of mice. But studies suggest even if cats do reduce local mouse numbers, their hunting cuts the opportunity for local hawks and owls to catch and eat mice. Raptor nest density in areas regularly prowled by house cats is significantly lower than in areas where the birds do not have to compete with cats.

See comment above, the hawks are the ones that kill the song birds around my place

It is a common fallacy that belling house cats can prevent songbird predation. But domestic cats are not native to North America, and consequently, wild birds lack a natural fear of the animals. As well, decades of research has shown birds do not link the sound of a tinkling bell to pending danger.

Once again, my experience shows this to be inaccurate. Birds will sit high in the tree while my cats are waiting in the bird feeder area for the chipmunks to come out. As for the bells, it doesn't tell the bird there is danger, but does alert them and gets their attention to look in the direction of the bell. However, some cats can stalk so slowly, that the bell doesn't make a sound (tried the bell on my one birder, he was much too good of a stalker so it didn't work)

In addition to their destruction of wildlife, cats are also under fire on account of their extraordinary reproductive rate. Some urban areas are overwhelmed with cats.

AGREE! That is due to IRRESPONSIBLE humans, not the cat's fault!


According to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, "cats can't add but they sure can multiply."
House cats, when allowed outdoors, regularly interbreed with local feral cats, and the resulting hybrid cat population preys on wild birds to the degree that up to two-thirds of their regular diet comprises songbirds.

Hmmmm, must be some mighty good hunting genes in these cats. See comment above about the skill level required to get birds.

Owing to the major impact cat predation can have on local songbird numbers, the matter of cat control has surfaced on the agendas of municipal authorities across Canada. Politicians are sensitive to the possibility of public furore over the notion of any kind of cat control. That is because cats have a special place in the hearts of cat owners to whom the concept of cat control is abhorrent. Since about 40 per cent of Canadian households have at least one cat, the scope of outrage could be very substantial.
Even so, several Canadian municipalities have taken bold steps in that direction.
In early April, Victoria, B.C., became the most recent municipality in which there have been suggestions by members of the public that cat licensing would be wise, owing to "the impact that cats can have on our environment."
In 2007, Calgary put in place mandatory cat licensing, and required that house cats be kept indoors or leashed when outside. Since then, 50,000 cats have been licensed and the number of euthanized strays has been cut in half.
Toronto's municipal code requires all house cats to be licensed -- there are 323,000 house cats in Toronto.
In Kingston, Ont., all cats more than 20 months of age must be registered.

Hmmmm, I live here, they should come visit the Queen's ghetto, or the North End. Many cats running around without collars. The key to keeping cats safe is education, education, education (with a mandatory spay/neuter policy, so they aren't running around looking for a mate and multiplying)

Recently, Hamilton pondered taking similar steps but backed off owing to anticipated public opposition.
Although Canada's wild birds are protected by federal and provincial legislation, there are no laws prohibiting cats from killing wild birds. Cat owners are off the hook if their felines kill wild birds because they can claim their pets were let outdoors to kill mice not birds.
There are close to 220 million house cats in the world. But very few politicians have ventured into the minefield of cat licensing, cat neutering or any other kind of cat constraint, even though dog control has a long history.
That is because, as the old adage points out, "you can own a dog... but your cat owns you."

Robert Alison is a zoologist and freelance writer based in Victoria, B.C.
Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 14, 2012 J6


I am certainly not advocating for allowing any cat to run free, but I really disagree with this article and the facts that have been presented.

I wholeheartedly agree that cats should be supervised outside, but not for the reasons presented, but to be responsible pet owners by keeping their cats safe from harm and disease. That is really nothing to do with licensing your cat (I do like the idea of mandatory microchipping and altering). I still think it boils down to education.
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Old April 17th, 2012, 10:42 AM
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i have had outside/inside cats for years and never saw one get a bird i agree completely with the above post and i would like to see the study they are quoting
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Old April 17th, 2012, 12:14 PM
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http://catnet.stanford.edu/articles/understd_pred.html

Understanding Cats and Predation
From Alley Cat Allies website © 2000. Reprinted with permission.

While many studies have shown that cats do not have a detrimental impact on wildlife on continents, there are several who feel that cats are to blame for the depletion of songbirds and other animals. Two studies most often quoted are the Stanley Temple study and the Churcher /Lawton study. Some groups use these studies in misguided effort s to discredit our work to humanely control feral cats. Over sixty studies have been done on different continents all showing three very important points:

• Cats are opportunistic feeders, eating what is most easily available. Feral cats are scavengers, and many rely on garbage and hand-outs from people.

• Cats are rodent specialists. Birds make up a only small percentage of their diet when they rely solely on hunting for food.

• Cats may prey on a population without destroying it. If this weren't so, we would no longer have any mice around.

Even though some cats can become efficient hunters and do kill birds, many international biologists agree that only on small islands do cats possibly pose a severe threat to the wildlife populations. They agree with biologist C.J. Mead that "Any bird populations on the continents that could not withstand these levels of predation from cats and other predators would have disappeared long ago..."

And finally, while many concentrate their efforts on blaming cats, the real culprit homo sapiens, goes free; continuing the destruction of habitat, hunting and killing, and using pesticides that endanger entire populations of wildlife, including millions of birds. The following is a collection of opinions from experts who have studied predation and who do not lay the blame on cats.

The above is an excerpt from the link I posted.

There is nothing that is going to deplete a animal population like a lack of food/breeding spaces, so in other words their natural habitat. If you look at what is happening with our exploding human population of clear cutting for subdivisions where homes are put on lots that have no space for trees. In our cities, the rich are buying up residential lots, and expanding the current house so it is brimming to the edge of property lines. Manicured lawns and gardens that aren't growing plants that provide natural food for the birds (let that thistle grow, the finch love the seeds).


Some facts based on the Churcher and Lawton study:

"Studying the hunting trophies brought home by 78 cats in a single English village, Peter Churcher and John Lawton found birds were 35 percent of the kill-by far the highest estimate in any such study. In a 1989 condensation for Natural History magazine, they multiplied their results by the estimated number of cats in the entire nation. Rarely are projections made with such limited data, except in junior high science projects - which may be an appropriate comparison, considering Churcher teaches at a boys' school.

And on the Wisconsin statement:

'Researchers in Wisconsin cite cats for killing 19 million songbirds.'

"Doctor Stanley Temple, co-author of this frequently quoted work, seemed exasperated when asked again to rehash his findings. 'The media has had a field day with this since we started," he sighed. Those figures were from our proposal. They aren't actual data; that was just our projection to show how bad it might be.' No one interviewed has seen Temple's unpublished research.

"But the [Sonoma County] supervisors appeared to give special attention to a letter written by Drs. Peter Connors and Victor Chow, UC/Davis researchers working at the Bodega Marine Laboratory. By projecting the numbers cited from Wisconsin and Great Britain, they estimated 500,000 Sonoma County birds are killed by cats annually. In a telephone interview, Connors said he has read only the condensation of the British study and has seen only "extracted forms" of Temple's work-which, of course, were guesstimates for the proposal. He was surprised to learn this study was unpublished. 'Look, we're not cat researchers,' said Connors. 'I've never worked with cats at all; I'm an ornithologist.' Then what expertise does he have about cats? 'Vic (Chow) has been participating in a mentor program with Piner High School students on a project tracking feral cats,' he explained. 'We had (radio transmitter) collars on three animals. We didn't do a full study; it's just a program with high school students.'"

As Hazel stated, people are going to do what they want to do.
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Last edited by Love4himies; April 17th, 2012 at 12:32 PM.
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Old April 17th, 2012, 02:38 PM
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Ok back

For me the issue isn't about birds or mice. It's about cats being allowed to roam freely when dogs are not. Some cats do dig up flowers, pee and poop in other people's yards and yup they kill the occasional bird and harm weaker cats. This isn't right or fair imo. My former outdoor cat was an expert bird catcher. I would suggest that GEOGRAPHY has loads to do with this.

But again all this is beside the point imo. If dogs can't roam free, why should cats be allowed to roam free?

Should cats be allowed to roam free on principle?
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Old April 17th, 2012, 02:39 PM
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Not sure how my statement relates to what you've stated, L4H. My remark is about the irresponsibility of allowing cats to roam and the fact that people who do so, will likely continue to do so.

I don't think the issue is all about wildlife, although I know there is an impact. (I've seen the predation by pets first hand during nesting season in a county park I used to frequent--both stray/feral cats with birds in mouth, and even a lab with a whole nest of warbler chicks in his mouth. That's on top of natural predation.) But still, the issue is not all about the wildlife--the issue is more about the cats and looking for ways to make owners more responsible for them.

You've found a way to keep your cats stimulated by supervising their trips outside--that's so much different than allowing them to roam at will and having them run afoul of traffic or predators. Did you know that in my township, there is no population of stray animals? That's because it's so dangerous here for them--we have fishers, coyotes, wolves, bobcats and the occasional cougar, any of whom are probably more than willing to take strays. So anyone dumping here or allowing their animal (cat or dog) to roam, is sentencing them to quick death. Much better to encourage them to keep the animals at home and under supervision if outside. If licensing of cats would increase awareness, I'm all for it. If the penalty for allowing them to roam is hefty, so much the better--maybe it will make them think twice before allowing their cat to roam.

I suspect that the truly irresponsible ones will simply remove the tags and allow their cat to roam, regardless. And of course, the dumping will continue. The only dumped cat that I know has survived was the one that made its way into my backyard a few years back. The Pack treed him and it came to me when they were put inside--and he is the only stray cat I know of from this township that has made it to the shelter and been adopted.

But the results Marko mentioned from Calgary are promising. Cutting the euth rate in half is a remarkable beginning.
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  #17  
Old April 17th, 2012, 03:05 PM
BenMax BenMax is offline
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Hate to be the major party pooper but start off with manditory spay/neuter = less cats roaming free = less bickering about cats being rats.
To me, it is like putting a horse before the cart because a heck of alot of people believe that cats are freedom roaming animals.
Don't get me wrong, I think the concept of licencing cats is great, but it also very hard to 'sell' as people are getting rid of their cats or abandoning them because they don't want to pay the fee. As a result, alot of unneutered animals roaming and reproducing.
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Old April 17th, 2012, 05:40 PM
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Not sure how my statement relates to what you've stated, L4H. My remark is about the irresponsibility of allowing cats to roam and the fact that people who do so, will likely continue to do so.

That's what I agreed with: The fact that people will do what the want and no legislation will change that, including licensing

I don't think the issue is all about wildlife, although I know there is an impact. (I've seen the predation by pets first hand during nesting season in a county park I used to frequent--both stray/feral cats with birds in mouth, and even a lab with a whole nest of warbler chicks in his mouth. That's on top of natural predation.) But still, the issue is not all about the wildlife--the issue is more about the cats and looking for ways to make owners more responsible for them.

You are right, but licensing won't accomplish that.

You've found a way to keep your cats stimulated by supervising their trips outside--that's so much different than allowing them to roam at will and having them run afoul of traffic or predators.
Agree, my point was that the author stated keeping a cat inside is not a prerequisite for being happy. I disagree with that statement because my cats (in fair weather) love going outside and look forward to it more than anything. It also keeps them stimulated.

Did you know that in my township, there is no population of stray animals? That's because it's so dangerous here for them--we have fishers, coyotes, wolves, bobcats and the occasional cougar, any of whom are probably more than willing to take strays. Same as hereSo anyone dumping here or allowing their animal (cat or dog) to roam, is sentencing them to quick death. Much better to encourage them to keep the animals at home and under supervision if outside. If licensing of cats would increase awareness, I'm all for it. If the penalty for allowing them to roam is hefty, so much the better--maybe it will make them think twice before allowing their cat to roam.

but only if the cat has a collar with tags on

I suspect that the truly irresponsible ones will simply remove the tags and allow their cat to roam, regardless. And of course, the dumping will continue. The only dumped cat that I know has survived was the one that made its way into my backyard a few years back. The Pack treed him and it came to me when they were put inside--and he is the only stray cat I know of from this township that has made it to the shelter and been adopted.

But the results Marko mentioned from Calgary are promising. Cutting the euth rate in half is a remarkable beginning.
Is it because of the licensing or because of the wonderful bylaw director that has advocated for low cost spay/neuter clinics, no kill shelters, etc, etc.

My stand is that I don't believe people will change their actions based solely on licensing. People will do want they want to.
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Old April 17th, 2012, 05:55 PM
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It's got nothing to do with "appreciating" the article. It's got to more with the perception the title of the article gives. This discussion has been had before here by someone who came on and called cats rats. If I have time I may go looking for the thread and pin it here for reference. If I'm not mistaken that thread was locked because of the feelings it aroused.

Back on track - when I see an article titled such as this one I suppose my hackles go up. I wasn't far wrong. It is the same as hundreds of other articles I've read. Not much blame being placed where it should be - with the owners. Not much said about responsible spay/neutering. Would have been an excellent venue to spout that. It was finally mentioned waaaayy down in the what? second last paragraph. When it is mentioned it is to say politicians back off when it comes to discussing the exact things that need to be discussed because of the minefield. Now wouldn't it be nice to find a politician who would actually do the job they are getting those outrageous salaries for and venture into that minefield? Maybe that's what is needed.

We need mandatory s/n of cat. I've said before cats need to be leashed or at the very least contained in a safe environment when they are outdoors. That is not for the safety of the songbird. It's for their own safety. We need licensing of all cats. I wonder if the SPCA is going to be willing to hire more officers to go around to the farmers and tell them to s/n all their cats. My guess would be no. They don't have the money and the government is not about to hand it over to them.

From personal experience, I have a few cats . Some of them live in an enclosed area where there are also trees and ummm, birds. Amazingly even with them living in such close proximity to each other in a years time there may be two birds caught and eaten by these cats. I know when there is because I find the feathers of the bird the next day. Not a half eaten bird. My cats use the whole bird. Nothing goes to waste. Now why does that not jive with the numbers claimed in the article? I don't think my cats are any different than the rest of them.

What would be marvelous to read is an article that might make people sit up and take notice of the issues surrounding all of the millions of homeless cats in the world. It would be nice to read that someone is finally taking a stand and doing something about it. Find an article like that and I would be more than impressed when I read it.

** Ooops, nothing goes to waste except for about two dozen or so feathers....
. My hackles went up too.

Your numbers don't jive with the data because the data is not accurate.
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Old April 17th, 2012, 09:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Love4himies View Post
My stand is that I don't believe people will change their actions based solely on licensing. People will do want they want to.
Basically, we agree then. Shocker, eh?

The only concrete benefit I can see is if the tag fees went back into the shelters and/or low-cost spay/neuter programs. BenMax's spay/neuter requirement also has merits, but again, it won't change the people who need the education most--and might cause an immediate temporary increase in the number of strays as people dump their animals rather than put up the money for the surgery.

It's a tough situation with no easy solution, but licensing might be a place to start if it encourages people who just need a little nudge in the right direction. Just the discussion of possible licensing might be an opportunity to educate well-meaning but naive owners about the dangers of letting their cats roam and the benefits to keeping them indoors.
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Old April 18th, 2012, 08:24 AM
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Yup me too - I just want some places to "start something".
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Old April 18th, 2012, 08:34 AM
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Yup me too - I just want some places to "start something".
Calgary is an excellent example.
Also there are municipalities that have indicated to an animal shelter that if an animal is found stray, and then reclaimed, the owner is to present a certicate of stelization in order to retrieve their pet. If the animal is not spayed/neutered, then they are given the mandate to sterlize and only then can the owner have their pet back. The cost is minimal. Some people have complied and paid the fee, while others declined to take their pet back. Good news is that these strays (providing they pass evaluations) are put up for adoption STERLIZED and if there is a problem with the animals, then they are put up for rescues (that is where I and the coordinator come in).

So just in your backyard Marko, efforts are being made.
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Old April 18th, 2012, 08:54 AM
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Originally Posted by BenMax View Post
Calgary is an excellent example.
Also there are municipalities that have indicated to an animal shelter that if an animal is found stray, and then reclaimed, the owner is to present a certicate of stelization in order to retrieve their pet. If the animal is not spayed/neutered, then they are given the mandate to sterlize and only then can the owner have their pet back. The cost is minimal. Some people have complied and paid the fee, while others declined to take their pet back. Good news is that these strays (providing they pass evaluations) are put up for adoption STERLIZED and if there is a problem with the animals, then they are put up for rescues (that is where I and the coordinator come in).

So just in your backyard Marko, efforts are being made.
and that's AWESOME
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Old October 24th, 2012, 10:44 PM
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License fees of cats

The cost of pet ownership is high enough. This especially so if you have multiple cats. Mine all stay indoors so why should I have to pay for a license. It's not as if they are being walked in the park like a dog. When the big guy goes out, he is on a leash and is supervised. If you let your cat roam free, he should be microchipped or have a break away collar with identification. Better to keep them inside away from the traffic and people who would harm them. This way you will have them for a long time.
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Old October 25th, 2012, 04:28 PM
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The cost of pet ownership is high enough. This especially so if you have multiple cats. Mine all stay indoors so why should I have to pay for a license.
When cat licensing was first implemented in Calgary, I thought the same thing. I also thought that licensing laws would actually cause MORE cats to be abandoned because if a cat ended up at Animal Services without a license, the "owners" wouldn't want to (or be able to) claim it because then they'd have to pay the hefty $250 fine to get it back. That hasn't been the case at all. In fact Calgary now has the highest "return to owner" and the lowest euthanasia rates for cats in all of North America.

There are some other really awesome things about cat licensing here. It costs a paltry $10/yr for neutered cats, and that money helps to fund SNAP (Spay Neuter Assistance Program), so that low-income people can get their cats fixed for little to no cost. That's great for the community. As well, when you license your cat or dog, you get an "I Heart My Pet" card that gives you discounts at various participating retailers. That's great for ME! I get 10% off every purchase at one of my favourite pet food stores, and with 5 cats to feed, the savings are tremendous over the course of a year. I'm a big fan of cat licensing now! I wish more cities would adopt a similar program.
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Old October 25th, 2012, 08:01 PM
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I am worried cats collars will get caught on a tree branch or a dog will be able to get a hold of the cat easier . There are collars that will break away in case ta cat does get caught on something . If this passed I hope people uses the break away collars. I think it is more of a way for the cities and towns to make more money as I really do not see how having cats get license will save birds. The only way to stop cats from killing birds is to not allow then go outside.
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Old October 26th, 2012, 12:06 PM
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I like the idea of licensing cats, but I understand Barkingdog's worries about it raising the cost of pet ownership. It already costs a lot to feed and give annual vaccinations. Sugarcatmom, you are lucky your fees are so cheap. Here licensing fees are twenty dollars per neutered animal and more if unneutered. That means our three cats cost $60 dollars a year. Our dog costs more. We follow the bylaw and renew each year and it has gone up twice in the past five years since we got Dr. Seuss.
We won't get rid of any of our current pets, but we certainly will think twice before adding another one and the cost of licensing. (And if you get your pet from a shelter you have to license because they know you have the pet.) That makes one less potential spot for an animal in need of a home.
If you could guarantee the license fee stayed low, it would be wonderful, but too many city councils look at animals as a luxury to be taxed with license fees whenever they need more money.
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Old December 1st, 2012, 08:59 PM
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In my town all pets are suppose to be licensed. It does not matter. I can see the point on if they get out, then they want all animals to be up to date on shots.
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Old December 2nd, 2012, 11:32 AM
Barkingdog Barkingdog is offline
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My only concern about cats be required to be licensed is they will have to wear a collar and this can put a cat a great risk . A cat could very easily get caught on a tree branch or a wire fence when going under it. I agree a well fed cat will still want to hunt for birds and mice. I have a neighbor that let their cat out and he come into our yard to hunt of mice and I have found dead a few times and they have not been eaten . A cat can live in a house and be very happy as long as it has a climbing tower and toys to play with. and I read the article . There are some cites in my state that be required cats to be licensed.


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Old December 2nd, 2012, 12:01 PM
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My only concern about cats be required to be licensed is they will have to wear a collar and this can put a cat a great risk .
Can't speak for other cities, but here in Calgary the cat's licence number is tied to their microchip number or tattoo, so they don't actually have to wear a collar. As per the Responsible Pet Ownership Bylaw, licencing your cat does not give it "license" wander off your property:

Calgary's Responsible Cat Ownership Bylaw


Quote:
A cat must be licensed but does not have to wear his licence tag as long as he has a readable microchip or legible tattoo.

..........

Responsible cat owners ensure that cats do not roam on public property or others’ private property. Under the Responsible Pet Ownership Bylaw 23M2006, cats must be confined to their owner’s property. Owners must be sure that their cat does not cause damage to property, such as digging in neighbouring yards, knocking over garbage cans or scattering garbage.
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