Utah lawmakers have turned down a proposed bill that would have let any member of the public shoot an animal they believed to be feral.
In response, Senator Dennis Stowell introduced State Bill 57.This bill will humanely deal with the stray cat population in Utah by allowing animal control officers to capture the feral cats, sterilize and fix them and then release the cat back to their original location.
This process overrides a three-day holding period that is required for cats that will potentially go up for adoption. Because these cats are feral, SB 57 will save the state time and money by controlling the population in a humane manner, rather than having the public take the matter into their own hands by having the right to kill any cat they assume is feral.
All cats brought into this program will be registered and records will be kept on their colonies’ location. Gregory Castle, chief executive officer of Best Friends Animal Society said, “It will be more cost effective than the annual killing of thousands of cats and provide communities with a proven, humane approach to lowering the populations of homeless or unclaimed cats.”
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