Sound Off Delaware: Cat problems

A recent Letter to the Editor wrote about what the author perceives is a serious feral and stray cat problem in the state of Delaware.

• Thank you for your informative and well-researched letter that points out the reality of the 90 million feral and stray cats all over the United States. — Gail Mihocko

• Some have predicted the population would grow after the town got some small relief due to the die-off of cats post surgery in 2013. Tens of thousands of dollars spent that accomplished nothing but a cat population that continues to grow. Many of us also predicted the human rabies death that the state tried to hide were it not for Senator Lawson getting the word out, and that lack of accountability for Public Health is clearly the most concerning part of this situation. We all know that kids will tell you if they are bit by a raccoon or fox, but they won’t necessarily tell you about that cute kitten that they picked up last week who later goes back into the woods and dies of rabies. There will be another human rabies death in our state, and every one of our legislators that have supported this, and the leadership in our Public Health needs to be held accountable.

We went 77 years without a human rabies death and everyone should be outraged that our state doesn’t think this cat feeders life was worth protecting, or the lives of the many people that lived near her. Thanks to Senator Lawson for protecting that community and not letting the state hide this human rabies death under the carpet, because sadly it probably won’t be the last one we will see. — No-Kill Delaware Elite Club

• I have had 10 feral cats TNR (Trap Neuter Return). Prior to this time I could not find resources in Delaware so I reached out to Pennsylvania. It was costly. I do not believe cat owners are the primary cause of the number of feral cats. I believe many people are feeding these feral cats without understanding how this is impacting the feral cat population. In my opinion the solution to Delaware’s feral cat problem is education and more funding and competent oversight to this problem. My feral problem was quite costly and they were returned to me. Not all people are financially able to support the TNR program. This problem is not limited to one area but it is impacting the entire state. — Cyndy Bourke

• Require cat owners to have a cat tag/license like the dogs folks do. — Howard Gaines III

• Technically yes. but i would also include an automatic chipping program and with dogs too. Vets should automatically do this to all animals. That way if animals are lost and end up whereever, then there is a trail. — April Murray

• The problem with that is it is expensive and depending on what type of chip, it would have to be registered and paid for yearly by the owners and most won’t do that. — Melissa Eagle

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