The words of Prince Charles are very relevant to the world of cats; feral, wild and domestic. Prince Charles has taken over as president of the wildlife Charity WWF-UK (UK branch of the World Wildlife Fund). His words echo what we, cat and animal lovers on this site, have been stating for a long time. Although his words come from a different angle they amount to the same thing.
Prince Charles says that the world’s population is using the world’s natural resources in a rapacious manner. We are obsessed with economic growth for the immediate years ahead. We are concerned with expanding material consumption. I would argue that this model rules everything that business does and if we are honest business rules everything.
He says that we are consuming what rightfully belongs to our children and grandchildren and their grandchildren. I call it mortgaging the future. We are “…sacrificing long-term progress on the altar of immediate satisfaction and convenience. That is hardly responsible behaviour.”
In destroying and consuming the world’s natural resources we are endangering the lives of wild cats in a reckless manner. Of course we are also endangering the survivability of all wild animal species and species of plants and trees. Future generations will pay a heavy price for that loss.
The mentality that drives us to short term gain at the expense of long term sustainability and balance is the same that drives people to kill feral cats. Killing feral cats provides immediate satisfaction and what seems like instant progress for some people who want rid of “the feral cat problem”. But it is naive and simplistic thinking. The only way to tackle what seems to be an excess of feral cats is to think very long term and in a precise and profound manner. If TNR was massively extended and properly managed nationwide or at least state wide for the indefinite future real progress would be made and in an humane manner. The protection of the Scottish Wildcat is based on this principle. I believe that thinking people are crying out for decent, sensible and sustainable behaviour in humankind at large. We are not getting it, sadly.
The mentality that drives rapacious consumption of natural resources is the same one that drives people to treat cats as accessories and when you do that declawing is easy.
We must go backwards to go forwards. We need to take stock and get coordinated worldwide. We need to stop pulling in different directions. First things first, however. Short-termism has left us with the burden of debt that paralysis decision makers through lack of funds. We must bite the bullet and steel ourselves for the long journey out of debt and then re-set our mentality to think about quality of life through sustainability.