Zoo Miami To Get Rid of All Cats Living Outside Around Their Zoo

Zoo Miami, aka Miami-Dade zoological Park and Gardens, have decided that they need to get rid of all the cats that are living outside, around their zoo in order, I suppose, to raise their profile by “cleaning up” the area.

In order to do this the management have decided to apply TNR principles to all the cats whether they are stray, feral or domestic and in addition to relocate the cats. I’m told that most of the cats in the area have already been through the TNR process and are residents of the area (they are genuine feral cats being cared for by TNR advocates I suspect). The zoo is working on this program with the assistance of Miami Dade Shelter who will do the neutering, vaccinations and ear tipping.

The report from examiner.com is that any cat will be trapped and relocated. If that includes domestic cats they will be in trouble with the law as it could be construed as theft and criminal damage (ear tipping a domestic cat would be criminal damage).

Alley Cat Allies, respected cat advocates, make it absolutely clear on their website that relocating a feral cat or a group of cats should be avoided if possible at all costs and be an absolute last resort. The obvious reason is that cats become attached to a place which they consider their home (their “home range”).

To remove them without first considering better alternatives is liable to result in cat deaths and injuries because the cats will wander and return exposing themselves to health risks and hazards.

In addition, Alley Cat Allies sets out, in detail, how to relocate feral cat colonies and it is clear that it requires a lot of thought, care and consideration. There is a clear indication that Zoo Miami have embarked upon their course of action to relocate without giving careful consideration to the matter and without considering it as a last resort.

They have been asked for some detail about how they intend going about relocating the cats but have failed to respond. This surely indicates that they do not like being questioned about their actions and that they are aware that their actions are not in the best interests of animal welfare. One expects the management of a zoo to be concerned about animal welfare although the more cynical of us understand that the first priority of zoo management is not animal welfare but financial profit, sometimes at the expense of animal welfare. This story appears to be a case in point.

I think it’s a public relations disaster for the zoo. However, perhaps only a few local residents are aware of it. The zoo justifies their actions by saying that feral and stray cats on the street around the zoo spread disease and there is a risk of infection from rabies. They have wheeled out the usual scaremongering tactics to justify their behaviour. People who know realise that there have been no known cases of humans getting rabies from cats for the period 2003 to June 2013.

What Zoo Miami decided to do smacks of the sort of thing that the Chinese did before the Olympic Games in their country in Beijing. They cleared the streets of stray cats and dogs and brutally killed them. Of course, Zoo Miami have not decided to kill these cats but their actions may lead to their deaths or injuries unless the relocation process is carried out with considerable care and attention to detail. The zoo has failed to provide confirmation that this is the case.

9 thoughts on “Zoo Miami To Get Rid of All Cats Living Outside Around Their Zoo”

  1. Zoo Miami has already killed 2 of the cats claiming they tested positive for FeLV or FIV. Whether that is the case or not, they never gave these 2 cats a chance. My organization, Undercats4Life has found places for positive cats before but they never gave the public/rescue community a chance prior to killing these 2 cats.

    When requesting the photos/id#s from Miami Dade Animal Services, it took them 4 days before they provided this information.

    Zoo Miami’s statement regarding cats posing a threat to the animals is just an opinion and not fact. There is no evidence the cats carried toxoplasmosis to any animal at the Zoo. They claim some animals have perished due to the cats but there is no evidence or proof of this, just hear say.

    Zoo Miami and Miami Dade Animal Services collaborated to “TNR” (their version is Trap, Neuter, Rehome”. However, rehome is a joke. How do you rehome a cat that is used to living outdoors? Are they going to relocate properly? No.

    Also, they didn’t put out a press release until after my organization and others brought this to the public’s attention. They didn’t ask cat rescues to assist first, they just wanted the cats gone and even with recommendations from a local known rescue, they didn’t want to make any decisions that would both protect the cats from being “relocated/rehomed” and would suffice whatever issues Zoo Miami is complaining about.

    Miami Dade Animal Services is not going to properly relocate these cats and it’s a damn shame.

    For further information, please feel free to stop by http://www.facebook.com/undercats4life


    • I notice by the pleas on your facebook site that you can’t find places for any of the excess cats in your area already. How is your hunt going trying to find places for the unwanted zoo cats too now? Any luck yet? How many did you take home with you?

      Hey! One of Micheal’s regulars here, Dee, claims how she loves cats so much and takes care of unwanted cats. Hit her up to take all those unwanted cats for you. I bet she’ll do it! She lives there!

      What? Dee didn’t offer to help even ONE of your cats? Huh … imagine that. 🙂

      They’re ALL talk, they always are. But it’s much more fun to blame everyone else in the world instead of yourselves, isn’t it.

    • Any animal welfare organizations overseeing the treatment of the cats and then their placement – wherever they are being placed? They aren’t above the law and need to treat the cats humanely.

      This piece is practically “dripping” with propaganda. Must be listening too much to HAHF/AWAKE vets. http://zoomiami.org/TNR

  2. Why is it when ever the subject of feral cats ( dumped house pets) comes up the dialog sounds more like extermination than dealing with the problem.

  3. My first question would be, “Where will they be relocated?”
    And, do these people have any idea of what it would take to place an entire colony elsewhere and ascertain that they stay in the new location?

    As all know, I’ve been involved in moving colonies https://pictures-of-cats.org/moving-a-feral-cat-colony-from-danger.html. It’s very hard work and requires the expertise of hand-on people with an exceptional knowledge of cats.

    And, as described by Michael, the status of every cat has to be determined. Domesticated cats should never be involved in such a project. Again, there should be someone available who can categorize each and every cat to determine whether they are true ferals, ferals, semi-ferals, strays, or domesticated http://cat-chitchat.pictures-of-cats.org/2014/05/definition-of-feral-cat.html.

    It’s so important to have a knowledgeable person because they know that strays (that haven’t reverted to ferals) and domesticated cats aren’t really a part of the “members only” feral colony. They may hang on the outskirts, but will never be accepted. They can’t be a part of any move.

    All in all, I feel that these people don’t have a true humane move in mind but rather a dumping.

    • I feel exactly the same Dee. Common sense tells me that the zoo is acting without due consideration because all they want to do it get rid of things which they think detract from the zoo’s image. It is going to lead to problems for the cats unless I am badly mistaken.


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