Wednesday, June 27, 2012

DC suburb considers feral cat protection bill

From The Examiner, by Marc Selinger on June 26, 2012

A Maryland suburb of Washington, D.C., is considering a bill aimed at reducing the trapping and killing of feral cats by animal control officers.


The legislation, introduced by Prince George’s County Councilmember Mary Lehman, would protect outdoor cats who are unsocialized to people and who have been sterilized through a “trap-neuter-return” or TNR program. Feral cats who go through a TNR program are eartipped, which means that while they are under anesthesia, the tip of their left ear is removed to indicate they have been neutered and vaccinated.


Under the bill, animal control officers who trap an eartipped cat in the field would have to release him or her immediately “if the cat is not attacking humans or other animals, damaging property, or offending the human senses by urinating in a yard or yowling in the middle of the night, etc.,” Lehman policy analyst Matt Dernoga told Examiner.com June 25. An eartipped cat who ends up at the county animal shelter would have to be held for three work days instead of being euthanized immediately, and animal control would have to give feral cat groups an opportunity to rescue the cat.

Although neutered feral cats are usually not licensed pets, Lehman considers it “wasteful and unnecessary” to euthanize them because they “are not a public health threat” and because they have caregivers who invest significant amounts of time and money getting the cats spayed/neutered, feeding them regularly and providing shelter, Dernoga said. Lehman's bill was prompted by complaints from caregivers in Laurel whose eartipped feral cats were trapped and euthanized by county animal control.

Dernoga said the bill represents “a small step forward” to reduce euthanasia at the county shelter, which takes in an estimated 150 to 200 eartipped feral cats a year, most of whom are put to sleep. Overall, the county shelter has euthanized an average of more than 3,800 tame and feral cats a year over the past three years, according to an overview of animal euthanasia in the county.

The council’s transportation committee approved the bill unanimously on June 19. The measure "will come to a vote before the full council on July 24, and is expected to become law," Dernoga said.


In a related matter, Dernoga told Examiner.com that Lehman hopes to foster collaboration between the city of Laurel and the county on a pilot TNR program that Laurel is working to set up.

The Alley Cat Rescue office is located in Prince George's County, Maryland, and we fully support this bill.  We have been in a constant struggle with the animal control agency regarding the treatment of feral cats in the county, and the amount of animals that are euthanized there. 

If you reside in PG County, please contact your representative to the county council and express your support for the feral cats in this county.  You can find their contact information here.






Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Join IDA for INTERNATIONAL DAY OF ACTION FOR SOUTH KOREAN DOGS AND CATS

Alley Cat Rescue has written about the horror of the dog and cat meat industry in South Korea on our blog and in our newsletters, and we are inviting all our members to support In Defense of Animals, a group whose mission is to end animal exploitation, cruelty, and abuse by protecting and advocating for the rights, welfare, and habitats of animals, as well as to raise their status beyond mere property, commodities, or things, in their International Day of Action for South Korean Dogs and Cats.


On August 7th, 2012, IDA is looking for help to raise awareness regarding the dog and cat meat industry in South Korea. From the IDA Website: "IDA would like to invite you to take action for the dogs and cats in South Korea, and to be a Compassionate Coordinator. The $2 billion dollar-a-year South Korean dog and cat meat industry slaughters approximately two and half million dogs and thousands of cats in the most horrific fashion for human consumption, because of the prevailing myth that the more an animal is tortured, the tastier and more tender the meat. Aside from the needless suffering, there is the very serious public health risk associated with eating dog and cat meat.

We need activists to organize outreach events to educate their communities about this industry of horror that is sanctioned by the South Korean government. You can hold a protest or leafleting in a public area to raise awareness, or have a table at a local venue or event to get the word out. IDA will provide you with the materials you will need to make your event a rousing success.

We would like to have a presence at the Korean Embassies and Consulates in the following cities. Please let us know if you would be willing to help coordinate an event:

U.S.:

Washington, D.C.
Chicago, IL
Atlanta, GA
Boston, MA
Houston, TX
Honolulu, HI
Seattle, WA


Canada:

Toronto
Montreal
Ottawa
Vancouver

You do not need to live in any of these cities to participate. If you are interested in helping spread the word about the Dogs and Cats of South Korea, please contact hope@idausa.org or call 707-540-1760. Your day of action could be any day around August 7th. Click here to register your event.


For more information about the South Korean Dog and Cat Campaign, please e-mail robin@idausa.org or call 415-331-8659."


The dogs and cats of South Korea are counting on you!"

You can also read more from Alley Cat Rescue on the Korean cat meat trade on our website, http://www.saveacat.org/calltoaction.html