Sunday, July 1, 2012

EVERYBODY Wants to be a Cat?!?

I love cats. If I see one on the street I immediately go over to see if he/she wants to be petted. I honestly love them to pieces.
But to be an outdoor cat is a lot more tough than being an indoor cat. They also kill more songbirds, rats, and mice.
Since domestic cats are pretty much something that us humans have brought along into our environments, whether urban, rural, or natural, it only makes sense that we should keep them inside, or at least outdoors on a leash.
Here are a number of problems that outdoor cats sometimes face every day:
  1. Too hot/too cold. They have no way of getting into our air-conditioned or heated houses. They are left to find shelter under porches and-- gasp-- beside still-warm car engines.
  2. Potential kidnapping (catnapping?). It turns out that little Kitty might just be picked up by an animal testing company vehicle. Even if this doesn't happen, there is still the risk of her being "rescued" by a neighbourhood family and never seen by her other humans again!
  3. Overpopulation. If your cat isn't spayed or neutered, he or she might contribute to the overpopulation problem. See note* for details.
  4. Roadkill. Cats do get hit by cars occasionally.
  5. Starvation. Even if you put out some food for him, he won't neccessarily get it before the raccoons do. (Even so, I <3 raccoons, too...)
  6. Thirst. In urban environments, natural water sources have all but disappeared. It would be deadly if Kitty tried to drink snow or antifreeze.
  7. Bullies. Animals can be bullied, too! Schoolkids will try to chase your cat, throw things at her, pick her up, corner her, and more. Teenagers might try something a little more dangerous.
  8. Getting lost. It doesn't always happen, but it does happen sometimes.
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Courtesy of The article says that you should feed stray cats, but I think you should only feed them vegetarian cat food (with appropriate supplements, of course).

*When You Shouldn't Spay Or Neuter, Or, Why Spaying And Neutering Is Sometimes Wrong: Spaying/neutering your companion animal is only neccessary if they are around other animals of their own species and opposite gender. My rabbit isn't spayed. She is fine the way she is, thank you very much!
People say that spaying/neutering will improve your animal's temperament. I say: why are we trying to change our animals to suit OUR desires? Of course, we shouldn't let them breed indiscriminately-- or at all, considering the current overpopulation dilemma-- but changing their very natures to make them easier to handle seems very wrong indeed. Oh, and did I mention that the surgery they must undergo is exceedingly painful and takes weeks to recover from?
I feel like the animal rights and animal welfare organizations are campaigning for more spaying and neutering not because they think the animals won't be able to control themselves, but because the owners will not be able to resist breeding their pets to make a new litter of puppies on a whim. Is this not an insult to our very intelligence? After all, if us humans could exercise some self-control, there would be no need to spay and neuter our animals.
Therfore, the only times that an animal should be spayed or neutered is when he or she is a stray and staying that way, or when he or she is for whatever reason being kept outside unsupervised.

Meeeeeeeew. I know it feels like you're doing Kitty a favour by letting him outside, but it really isn't! Here are some things you can do:
  • Keep your cat indoors, or supervised on a leash outdoors.
  • Let fellow cat owners know that urban streets are not the place for a cat! Kindly ask them to leave their cats inside, or supervised on a leash.
  • Share this blog post with all the cat owners in your life!
See you next week!

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