Undeniably, there is a thread of decency running through the citizens of America when it comes to how feral cats should be treated in their communities. There is a battle going on but this decency will win the day. The residents of Palmerston, PA, decided that the Palmerston Borough Council ordinance 728 which forbids the feeding of stray cats is simply unfair and inhumane.
Some say it leads to the starvation of stray and feral cats. The feeding takes place as part of TNR programs. Obviously there are other residents who don’t want to see feral cats and they no doubt support Ordinance 728 but at a recent meeting the overriding opinion was that despite the need for rules they cannot support an ordinance which lacks compassion towards animals.
Of course this is correct. And because it is correct this attitude of decency will prevail no matter how loudly people shout in support of inhumane methods of dealing with feral and stray cats.
“We are advocating for no starvation, compassionate ordinances but we also know that there has to be rules,” said Donna Crumb Carbon County humane officer.
The appropriateness of this ordinance is perhaps summed up in the story of Sandy. She is a resident of Palmerston, PA and she was fined $123.25 for feeding stray cats without prior warning. She said:
“I’m 76 years old. I’ve never even had a traffic ticket. So then I sat down, I opened it up and I’m like, oh my God I’m getting fined for $123.25.”
Palmerston Borough Council appear do be responding reasonably. They understand that the ordnance needs to be looked into. They realise that they have to make laws which accommodate all community members. Understandably some residents also don’t want to be living near TNR feeding stations but as part of TNR feeding feral cats must be regarded as acceptable.
You sense that at this meeting the majority opinion of the residents is to treat feral cats humanely which means TNR programs which in turn incorporate feeding.
Selected bits of the Palmerton Ordinance
Chapter 54 Dogs and Other Animals
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Palmerton 3-23-2017 by Ord. No. 728, approved 3-23-2017. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Any area where food is supplied to animals in an open, unrestricted manner, allowing animals to come and go freely.
54-4 Running at large; nuisances; additional regulations.
Feeding stations are prohibited. Any feeding station equipment remaining after notification to the property owner will be removed and a citation issued.
My comment: Restrictive law regarding pets:
[Dogs and cats at large. It shall be unlawful for any owner/keeper/handler of dogs or cats to permit the same to run at large within the Borough of Palmerton or to permit the same to run upon the streets, roads or highways of the said Borough or upon the property of another person to the annoyance or inconvenience of the residents or pedestrians or of the operators of motor vehicles using the said streets, roads and bridges.]
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