Anne Arundel County is currently considering a bill (Bill No. 96-17), introduced by Congressmember John Grasso, that would provide humane guidelines for cat caretakers and animal control officers. This bill defines important terms such as community cat, community cat caregiver and eartipping. It also exempts eartipped cats from impoundment by animal control and allows cat caregivers to pick up community cats that become impounded without having to prove ownership or pay the applicable fees. Community cats will be held for at least five days unless they are “extremely aggressive, seriously injured, or suffering.” Anne Arundel County currently has no ordinances applying to trap-neuter-return. This bill will provide clarity and enable cat caregivers to implement TNR.
The most recent statistics available from Anne Arundel County’s Animal Control website from July-September 2017 indicate that a large amount of time, money and resources are used to handle community cats. Animal control stated that unowned cats compromise 17% of their intake and 70% of their euthanasia, excluding owner requested euthanasia. Research shows that community cats can live long, healthy lives outdoors with proper care. It is unnecessary and wasteful for animal control to use so many resources on euthanizing these cats.
ACR urges Anne Arundel County residents to tell their city council member that they support Bill No. 96-17! This bill may be voted on as soon as 12/18/17. Some talking points to consider:
Anne Arundel County Animal Control. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.aacounty.org/departments/animal-control/forms-and-publications/survey-form-july-sept-2017.pdf
Best Friends Animal Society. “New Research Exposes High Taxpayer Cost for Eradicating Free-Roaming Cats.” Best Friends Animal Society. N.p., 18 Mar. 2010. Web. 12 Aug. 2014.
Edinboro, C, Watson, H, Fairbrother, A. (2016). Association between a shelter-neuter-return program and cat health at a large municipal animal shelter. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 248(3), 298-308.
Fairfax County Police Department. (January 19, 2012). Trap, Neuter, Return Program Decreases Homeless Feral Cat Population. Retrieved from https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/police/news-releases/2012/011912trapneuterreturn.htm
Ireland, T. & Neilan, R.M. (2016). A spatial agent-based model of feral cats and analysis of population and nuisance controls. Ecological Modelling, 337, 123-136.
Letters: Animals’ welfare improving in Indy. (October 12, 2017). Retrieved from https://www.indystar.com/story/opinion/readers/2017/10/12/letters-animals-welfare-improving-indy/757506001/
Stoskopf, M. K. & Nutter, F. B. (2004). Analyzing approaches to feral cat management — one size does not fit all. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 225, 1361–1364.
Alley Cat Rescue is leading in the way in promoting humane and compassionate care for ALL cats.