This week, the New Zealand town of Omaui suggested banning cats to save the native birds. Though cat-lovers are unhappy, the suggestion isn’t as ridiculous as it seems at first glance.
First, there are no plans to kill existing pets. Specifically, Omaui councilmembers want owners to neuter, register, and microchip their animals. Fair enough. Then, they’ll be allowed to live out their natural life. But then when they die, that’s it. Residents won’t be allowed to get a new cat to replace the old one, but Garfield is safe so long as he lives.
Second, there’s a good reason for this policy. Cats kill birds, and sometimes those birds are endangered. As John Collins, a member of the Omaui Landcare Charitable Trust who suggests the ban put it:…
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