A grumpy neighbour’s letter complaining about cats roaming around and defecating on their property has won the support of locals. The note was shared on the community Facebook page for Moreton Bay, North of Brisbane, earlier this week after a resident received it in their mailbox. ‘Dear neighbour. If you have a cat that likes to roam, please keep it inside,’ the note read. ‘There have been two cats on our property recently (1 black, 1 grey), and they have been defecating where our children play. ‘Today, there was a poo on our stairs. If this continues, we will be getting a trap from the council and taking the cat(s) to the pound. Thanks.’ A Moreton Bay Regional Council Local Law requires all domestic animals, including cats, be kept on their own property and prevented from wandering or escaping. Cat traps are available at no charge for residents experiencing problems with wandering or nuisance cats on private property. Many Aussies supported their neighbour’s request – and said cat owners needed to follow the council’s rules. ‘The letter is respectful, and the cat owner should be as well,’ one said. A second added: ‘I think this letter is polite and non-offensive, and if I were them, I’d be beyond frustrated that I had to clean up after someone else’s pet. ‘Imagine if someone came and sh*t in your yard every day?’ Another declared: ‘Sh*t is sh*t – animal or not, and it’s disgusting. I have a cat; she’s an indoor cat. I’d be horrified if someone else had to clean up after her!’ A third said: ‘Legally, they need to be kept on the owner’s property, or they can be captured and taken to the pound. ‘This person didn’t need to write a letter. They could’ve just gotten traps off the council.’ A fourth declared: ‘All cat owners should keep their cats inside or in their own yard. ‘I’m tired of having cats roam in our garden. It’s the ruling anyway, but it’s not followed by most cat owners. ‘Dogs are to be inside their own yard and on leads, so why can’t cat owners follow the council’s ruling?’ Another local agreed and said: ‘If cats keep coming onto your property and are seen like this person says, then they are doing the right thing, first letting people know in the area that their cats are out and be if they catch any, then you will know where to find them! Kudos to the writer of the letter.’ ‘Cats (and I can’t stress this enough) are an invasive species. Keeping your cats indoors is the best for their safety and the safety of all our native mammals, reptiles and birds. ‘What people don’t realise is that cats have very potent gram-negative bacteria in their saliva, so even the native animals that manage to escape will die of resulting infections if they were so much as scratched by the cat. ‘As someone who has experience in a wildlife ward, any reptile/bird/native mammal that comes in for a cat attack is promptly treated with antibiotics, and this treatment usually needs to go for around a month.’ Research released in 2019 found every single feral cat slaughters more than 740 local wildlife creatures each year. The research, published in the book, Cats in Australia: Companion and Killer, found that a domesticated cat would kill about 75 animals annually. Nationwide, three million mammals, two million reptiles, and a million marsupials are dying every day from feral and pet cat attacks. Cat Protection CEO Kristina Vesk said owners had a responsibility to protect local wildlife by keeping their cats indoors. ‘It’s not hard to keep a cat indoors. When they’re in foster care they spend all their time indoors – the key to having a happy and healthy indoor cat is providing them with lots of enrichment.’ The feline expert encouraged owners to install indoor climbing spaces and window boxes to keep their cats feeling fulfilled. ‘Cats can’t take all the blame [for declining wildlife] but what owners can do is play their part in protecting the environment – it’s based on being a good neighbour,’ she said.
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