#Animal Rights
Nillumbik Shire Council

Nillumbik Shire Council is recommending 24 hour cat confinement to be enforced within the next 2 years in its current draft Domestic Animal Management Plan. We agree with responsible cat ownership including the dusk to dawn curfew, however we believe compulsory 24 hour cat confinement will lead to stress and suffering for both cats and people.

• This law will lead to some cats living in unacceptable conditions. People who make the choice to confine their cats often also choose to spend the $2000 - $5000 plus on outdoor cat enclosures. Many people will not be able or willing to spend this sort of money and just confine their cats indoors denying them access to grass, sunshine and entertainment. Containing a cat that is used to freedom is very stressful on all members of the household as the cat gets more and more distressed.

• For some cat owners imprisoning these freedom loving animals is unacceptable. Those who have no intention of containing their cats then have the anxiety and stress of their cat being impounded with potential fines and loss of the cat for repeat offences.

• Cats provide companionship, reduce depression, and encourage responsibility and care in children. This law will make cat ownership so expensive and stressful that people just won’t be willing to take on the responsibility no matter how good cats are for our wellbeing.

• An increased number of cats will be surrendered to shelters and loved pets euthanized unnecessarily.

• The effect of cats on wildlife is always a concern however we need to balance the needs of the environment, and the needs of Council to manage issues between neighbours, against the benefits of cat ownership.

• The Council conducted a survey of 355 people, of whom 53% said Council should enforce 24 hour cat confinement. The population of Nillumbik is 60,000. The opinion of 188 people out of 60,000 (.3%) cannot be considered representative of the population and does not give the Council a mandate to enforce this law.

If you are a resident of Nillumbik PLEASE PUT YOUR SUBURB UNDER CITY/TOWN so that Council can see that residents don't want this law. The petition was submitted to Council on 13 June 2008 but we are still accepting signatures as we will be making further presentations to Council in July.

We, the undersigned, strongly object to the Nillumbik Shire Council's proposal to enforce 24 hour cat confinement within the next two years.

We support responsible cat ownership, including desexing, microchipping, dusk to dawn cat curfew, and community education. We request the recommendation for 24 hour cat confinement be removed from the Domestic Animal Management Plan 2008 - 2011.

The Stop 24-hour Cat Confinement for Nillumbik petition to Nillumbik Shire Council was written by Anna Jones and is in the category Animal Rights at GoPetition.