Controversial cat control law vetoed

September 24, 2010 3:32:42 PM PDT
Jean Jacobs is the self proclaimed cat whisperer, and cares for a half dozen feral cats.

Many are not suitable for adoption.

In Kingston, there's no shortage of feral cats, those are cats born in the wild, often the litter of abandoned pets.

Eric Harrell is all too familiar with the problem.

"They're going to the bathroom on our porch, all of our Christmas ornaments were ruined like our igloo and our polar bear with cat urine, you know it's a pretty nasty thing," Harrell said.

Thursday night, the mayor of Kingston vetoed a controversial cat control law he says was unenforceable.

The proposed law would allow the city to round up any cat without a collar, if that happens to be someone's pet, the owners would have to pay $25 per day that it was in the city's custody.

Critics say the proposed law was impractical and not well thought out.

"There's going to be a lot of healthy pets that are going to be euthanized because they're never claimed," said Dr, Arnold Rugg, a veterinarian.

Dr. Rugg also says the city doesn't have properly trained personnel to deal with wild cats, nor the money.

"This city right now is struggling and borrowing $1.8 million just to meet their expenses. You have to do more," Jacobs said.

Experts say an aggressive program to catch, spay or neuter cats, then release them back into the wild could drastically reduce the population within three to four years.

But, an impatient city council is considering an override in an attempt to get something done.