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Luhr, Bagdonas, Mcdaniel: Be proactive in addressing feral cats

Luhr, Bagdonas, Mcdaniel: Be proactive in addressing feral cats

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Editor:

Regarding Casper City Council’s recent Work Session, June 23, 2020 and its proposed ordinance amendment to instate a ban on feeding of feral and stray cats in Casper, we are very concerned with this proposal. This is not a cost effective, mainstream or socially responsible approach to reducing cat populations. How can Metro, whose mission should be to care for these animals, condone letting them starve after they’ve been fed for so long? A great deal of research exists to substantiate that withholding food from feral and stray cats does not solve the cat population problem. The logical alternative is Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), a program adopted by other Wyoming communities such as Buffalo, Cheyenne, Jackson, Laramie and Sheridan, as a positive, humane and effective long-term approach to population reduction.

The Casper City Council faces a defining moment. It can choose to create a better community with cost-effective outcomes and improved community relations concerning animal protection and welfare. Or it can continue to throw good taxpayer money after bad, in the outdated method of catch and kill. This technique has proven to be a never-ending and futile process with the expected result of yowling and fighting under windows at night, spraying and other nuisance behaviors. Additionally, unvaccinated, unaltered cats create an enormous health problem, for cats and humans, as diseases spread and cats and kittens die under people’s homes, in their sheds and under porches. And the city will still have the huge cost of trapping, housing and euthanizing large numbers of cats.

After decades it is evident that Casper still has the same problem and euthanizes hundreds of cats each year. Isn’t it time to ask if another approach would be more successful and cost effective?

Grant monies exist to establish TNR programs in problem areas. And Casper is a problem area. We would like to see Casper Metro and the City Council be proactive in addressing cat overpopulation.

SUZANNE LUHR, SYLVIA BAGDONAS, PAT McDANIEL, Wyoming Coalition for Animal Protection, Laramie

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