Sunday 13 July 2014

Dublin Ireland: Poisoned Stray and Feral Cats

This is rather typical story of feral cat poisoning.  I hate to say it but the poison is antifreeze and it seems that somebody is putting down food laced with antifreeze which kills cats by destroying kidney function.  There's lots of this sort of thing about anywhere in the world. Note: the manufacturers are remise in not making antifreeze cat safe. It is possible.

The headline to the news story in the media is “people are devastated".  The people referred to in the headline are those engaged in feeding, trapping and neutering the feral cats who inhabit the Richmond Road area of Dublin.
Richmond Road, Dublin, Ireland

The headline is actually incorrect because some residents don't give a damn and some residents are probably quietly pleased judging by the comments.  The comments are very typical as well as the poisoning.  Whenever you have cat poisoning articles you can bet your bottom dollar that about 50% of the comments are for the poisoning while 50% are against it.

Those that are for the poisoning are, of course, people who don't like cats but more importantly they are people who don't like cats wandering around particularly into their gardens.  They consider the feral and stray cat dirty and disease ridden and a hazard to human health.

These people criticise cat owners who don't take responsibility for their cats by ensuring that they are neutered or ensuring that they are kept in; whatever it takes to avoid a cat colony in a public place.

This is the first time that I have read a story about a cat colony in Ireland being poisoned en masse. The stories that are in the news media on this subject often relate to the USA simply because most stories about cats on the internet emanate from the USA.

The truth of the matter is that the people who are sympathetic towards the poisoner do have a point and I hate to say that.  People who do not approach cat caretaking responsibly and allow them to wander are doing the cat a great disservice. They taint the image of the cat in the eyes of the public and give an opportunity to immoral people who don't like cats the chance and the reason to kill them in a horrible way.

There's no excuse or justification for poisoning community cats.  However, the world is very imperfect and although poisoning cats is a criminal offence there is almost a zero chance of the person being caught and a pragmatic approach is called for namely to tackle the root cause of the problem in the long-term which, as you know, is poor cat caretaking.

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