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Fine for feeding strays: Why so catty about it?
A responsible move towards curbing the growth of stray animals is welcomed. But how about we give it more of a radical kick where it could really make a difference?
March 19, 2012 11:18 by kippreport
Kipp knows a good mix of people who come from different schools of thought when it comes to domesticated animals. We have colleagues who are more than willing to be foster homes for animals that are being re-homed and we have colleagues who are cringe at the thought of sharing their domicile with another species. (Yes, we avoid talking to them about rats, cockroaches and ants that plague any major cities lest we want to rid them of sleep altogether.)
So when Kipp heard about Dubai Municipality levying a 200AED fine for feeding stray cats, we knew the Kipp community would be divided in two different camps: the good-riddance camp and the aww-poor-kitties camp.
As for Kipp, though, we’re of the thought that while it’s great that Dubai Municipality is taking action in reducing the city’s stray cat numbers, we’re hoping that levying people feeding the strays won’t be an isolated move.
We’re pretty sure the game plan isn’t to just to do these two existing things: stop stray cats from procreating and stop people from feeding the stray cats. After all, this doesn’t stop people from intentionally leaving their pets astray when they have no need for the pets anymore.
Now here’s the catch. What about starting the conversation of completely banning the sale of pets altogether? Kipp’s not talking about completely closing down businesses—after all most of these stores sell pet supplies anyway. It would mean an overhaul of their business strategy to exclude the sale of any animals.
This would prevent the easy access to exotic pets, the proliferation of ‘puppy mills’ and ‘kitten factories’, and increase the chances of re-homing kennel and cattery-bound animals and possibly decrease the number of strays.
If not a complete ban, then a temporary one for a few years, at least?
This isn’t a unique idea at all. In fact, pockets of cities in the US have banned pet stores from selling animals. These include West Hollywood and South Lake Tahoe in California and Albuquerque in New Mexico. Interestingly, no pet stores in West Hollywood were actually selling animals when the law went into effect. And South Lake Tahoe’s ban started in 2009 but didn’t take effect until 2011. Albuquerque is the best case study, where it started the legislation came into effect in 2006. Here’s a 2010 article that talks about the ban in detail from MSNBC.
What do you think? Should the UAE consider a ban on pet sales altogether? Or is the levy on feeding strays and sterilising strays enough?