I am going to sensitively suggest that Muslims in Luton and Bradford may be contributing to stray cat problems in those cities. These are my reasons:
I am told that Muslims in general are against spaying and neutering their cats. In addition they tend to shun the Western method of looking after domestic cats as “members of the family” and often loosely own them in much the same manner that Brits owned their cats 200 years ago when cats were semi-domesticated and lived outside and in an outhouse. This said it is probable that domestic cats are less popular with Asian Muslims than with non-Muslim Brits.
The Muslim attitude towards not neutering cats comes from their faith which apparently is against artificial methods of birth control
Sarah Hartwell (a cat expert and owner of messybeast.com) writes:
“….orthodox Muslims do not permit artificial methods of birth control as being against Muslim law. [Although] some cats owned by less strict households might have been neutered and might be kept in a more “Western” manner…Such pet cats are often on a par with farm cats (barn cats) and may be semi-wild or nervous rather than fireside kitties.”
I have not set out to criticise Muslims. I am just referring to facts and two stories from local newspapers, one from Luton, a town with a heavy Muslim presence (24.6%) and likewise Bradford (24.7%), specifically the Girlington and Wheatley Lane areas.
Apparently the Studley Road area of Luton is bad for stray cats. This area has a high Muslim population [link to census figures].
Note: I am not saying that all Muslims don’t spay and neuter their cats and neither am I saying that all British non-Muslims neuter their cats. I am simply suggesting that the attitude towards neutering amongst the Muslim community will of necessity cause more stray cats.
The Luton on Sunday online newspaper’s headline is: “Charities call Luton a ‘problem area’ for stray cats“.
Animal charities of Luton say that Luton has become a problem area for stray cats. A Cats Protection spokeswoman said:
“Luton is a particular problem area. Getting your cat neutered is extremely important…”
The Telegraph and Argus, a Bradford newspaper, has the headline: “Concerned charity boss pinpoints ‘terrible areas for stray cats’ in Bradford“.
The author writes:
“A CAT rescue charity is on the brink of closure as it struggles to deal with the large amount of cats and kittens dumped on its doorstep…”
The charity states that their advice to people in the area of Girlington and Whetley Lane in Bradford to neuter and spay cats is being ignored. These areas are primarily Muslim based on my research (wrong? Please correct me).
Girlington and Whetley Lane are:
“terrible areas for stray cats. They will just have litter after litter of kittens. Sometimes it seems like we are fighting a losing battle. It really is bad.” (Mrs Brenda Slattery of Allerton Cat Rescue).
To be frank when a person does refuses to spay and neuter their cat it is due to ignorance. If a person simply fails to do it is due to carelessness and ignorance. In the modern age this sort of behaviour should not take place or be acceptable in the interests of cat welfare and social cohesion.