Good question.We have a few cats who roam our neighborhood also.Aggravating because they go to the bathroom in flowerbeds and such.It smells nasty.
I have a cat that is strictly an indoor cat.She never goes outside.We have a sunporch that is screened in so she spends most of her time there.Even in the winter she likes to be out there for awhile.
I guess I don't think having to get a license would make any difference.Like you said some people would most likely leave the cats out for good,not claim them.I think there would be a bigger problem then.For whatever reason people IMO don't seem to take as good a care of cats. I wish so much people would get their cats and dogs fixed.Our vet seems to always have cats they are trying to find homes for.The other day they had 4 kittens and a teenage cat.Sorry, turned into a rant.
I have 3 cats, are all indoor / outdoor & all are spayed or neutered. Personally they should be microchipped or tattooed with the owners info! In addition to my 3 I feed one that belongs to the neighbor (he thinks he lives here) and at least 3 strays! The neighbors cat is neutered, he was a stray until she took him in. I know at least 2 of the strays are male. I can't get close enough to the 3rd one to see. None of them will come near me, but somethings you can see from a distance, LOL. The strays make me crazy, just so unfair that their owners didn't care enough about them to take care of them.
I'm afraid licensing would be really difficult. Issuing the license would be no big deal, but enforcing the law would be costly & difficult.
I did not realize dogs had to be licensed. Just reading up on this, I learned that a license for a cat is optional in my area. If a dog is running loose w/o a license, it can be picked up by a dog warden, or shot!
If licenses were required for cats, I don’t know how that would cut down on stray cats being a problem in your area, except that they could be lawfully picked up by animal control people, and/or shot. I don’t especially like that idea. So I say “no” to licensing of cats.
For the record, my two cats stay indoors. They are well cared for, with vaccinations up to date.
I do think people should keep their cats indoors, or leashed when they are outside. I learned at an Audubon Society meeting that cats have a terrible impact on wild birds, especially young fledging birds, which are not the best flyers.
saw-whet - that is why I would like to see these area cats have to be licensed. For the fact that they DO get into bird's nests and destroy other natural wildlife. I have a rant too but not for the BB. ;)
I’m sorry about the cats in your area destroying wildlife, Ann Marie. A lot of people don’t realize how much damage cats do, or they just don’t care. Cats are natural hunters. Besides killing fledgling birds, they kill baby rabbits too.
When I was at the Audubon Society meeting, the speaker was quite adamant and used very strong language about keeping cats indoors. I think it might be especially important right now, with all of the young birds learning to fly, baby rabbits about, and so on.
Interesting post, Ann Marie.
Where I live cats as well as dogs are required to be licensed annually and microchipped, and it costs $150 extra if you refuse to spay or neuter your animal. Pretty steep fines ($500 and upward) if you get caught with unlicensed/unaltered pets.
I don't often get asked to define irony, but when I do, I always say,
"Why, yes. Yes, I AM a Field Editor for Taste of Home."
Cats are supposed to be licensed in my town, just like dogs. Mine is, even though he's strictly an indoor cat and doesn't wear a collar. All too many run around loose, though, and I'd be willing to bet that none of them are licensed. Cats (and dogs, too, of course, but there seem to be way more cats) running loose is a huge peeve of mine. I know who several of the ones that poop in my yard belong to, and I'd love to take the poop and put it on their doorstep. Better yet, ask them to come pick it up themselves.
Just read the other replies, and yes, the ones that wander around here do kill a lot of *my* doves. Since I got my dogs, though, they at least don't bring their kill into my back yard anymore.
Cats and dogs have to both be licensed in all the towns around here. I don't see where it would have any impact on the stray/wild cat population. I honestly don't know how one would get the word to the feral cats who have no owners--LOL.
There are cats roaming in both places where we have houses, Some are pets who are allowed to roam, I believe, some are wild. Yes, it can be annoying to have someone else's pet visiting/messing/getting into your trash. However, there are a couple of upsides as well. There are field mice in the country, and I think it helps to have cats coming by now and then. Also--don't know if this is true, but I recently read that deer don't like to go to areas where there are cats. Given the serious problem of Lyme's disease, that's a definite advantage that outweighs a number of the disadvantages.
And those licenses? Around here, they're just really a 'pet tax', just a way for the towns to make extra $$$. You get no benefits for havign your pet licensed, and no one is checking up on it, either. I have one cat who's 18, one who is about 8 (but only been with us a year). We've had a number of other cats in the 37 years we've lived here. Since I keep them inside at all times, I have never licensed any of them. And the township clerk used to live 2 doors from me, and knew my cats well. No one's ever given us any grief over having unlicensed pets. I can see the value of licensing and keeping track of pets that come in and out, who may have contact with the public, who may get lost. But it's totally unnecessary for the pet who is NEVER permitted out of the house (except for trips to the vet).
What does a license do except cost money? If you see a cat in your flowerbed, do you know who, if anyone, it is licensed to?
So what? Big deal.--Closing lines of Buckaroo Banzai Beyond the 8th Dimension, AND of my childhood mix tapes.
It is a requirement here to license dogs and cats... neither of my cats ever leave the house but they both have licenses in the junk drawer! I pay every year and toss them in the drawer...
I have no idea what the regulations are about licenses for cats here, but I do know that if you go to the animal shelter to adopt a cat you have to agree that the cat will be kept inside at all times. If you won't agree, you don't get a cat.
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