The agriculture minister of Germany, Christian Schmidt, has declared that male cats who have not been neutered will not be allowed to leave the family home and roam free. What about unspayed females? I suppose the same rule applies.
It appears that for the first time Germany has joined other countries such as New Zealand, Australia and America in publicly stating that there are too many male domestic cats wandering around impregnating stray females while at the same time there are committed animal advocates who are practising trap-neutered-return programs. Their work is being undermined by careless cat owners. It was always thus anywhere on the planet, to be fair.
This is cat news for the simple reason, as stated, that it is the first time that I have read about a senior spokesperson in the German government complaining about an overpopulation of stray cats.
As a senior minister in the German government has suggested that only male neutered cats (and I presume female spayed cats) are allowed outside, it may become law sometime in the future. An alternative which appears to have been proposed, as well, is that cats should be on a leash when outside. These are proposals which had been amply discussed in other countries and by other governments. The leash idea won’t take off in my opinion.
“It is necessary to limit or prohibit free movement of male house and farm cat capable of reproduction for a limited time…” (A quote from a new animal welfare report issued by the agriculture minister)
According to a government report there are 1 million stray cats in Germany. That may sound a lot to Germans but it is quite a small number to people in other countries.
It appears that in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia irate citizens had turned to killing stray cats resulting in a ban being issued by the local government. Despite the ban on killing which came into effect in March 2015, 1,400 cats have been killed since then. This is disturbing news and I’m surprised to hear about it to be honest. I had thought that German citizens would be a little more sensitive towards stray and feral cats and try and deal with them more humanely.
The well-known animal rights organisation, PETA, supports the proposed measure. We know that PETA has a thing against feral cats and thinks that they should be killed. So it is not surprising that they support a law requiring cats to remain inside unless they are spayed or neutered.
I suppose the outstanding question is, how can this sort of law be successfully enforced?
The argument for reducing stray cat population of Germany is that it benefits both people (in that stray cats are seen as being a nuisance to some people) and the cats themselves, whose lives they say are miserable, suffering as they do from range of diseases which spread rapidly throughout the wild population of cats. Both of these arguments have also been well rehearsed in other countries. It’ll be interesting to see whether Germany follows through on the suggestions of the agriculture minister or whether they were made out of turn and without government backing.
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Source: The Telegraph