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Mandatory Spay/Neuter as Law? - Page 3

post #61 of 63
Originally Posted by TNR1
Heidi...and may I add.....educating owners to keep their pet. More and more emphasis is on spay/neuter now (which is wonderful)....but we need other resources in places....dog trainers, behaviorists, many, many more outlets for people to get help with litterbox issues etc.

And more pet-friendly rental housing would certainly help too!
post #62 of 63
Originally Posted by valanhb
As Laurie keeps saying, this would have to be one part of a multi-pronged approach: Sanctioned TNR, Low Cost S/N Programs along with the Mandatory S/N & Registration of Breeders (perhaps with inspections to shut down BYBs and puppy/kitten mills). On that part I definitely see your point Spotz - this one thing alone wouldn't solve the overpopulation problem.
Mandatory S/N as was originally proposed will cause more problems than it will solve, and will be detrimental. An alternate 2 step process would work much better.

Requiring all breeders be registered is good, it would allow for health inspections, and would strongly discourage BYB. This could actually tie into the S/N law. If an owner is found breeding without being registered, and actively refuses to register, or registers and fails a health inspection, then the animals can be confiscated and S/N at owners expense, or otherwise rehomed.

Sanctioned TNR would greatly reduce the number of fertile Ferals, in effect greatly reducing the likelyhood of an intact owned cat from finding a mate. Also if an intact cat is found wandering more than once, then the cat is subject to being S/N at owners expense or S/N and rehomed.

Low cost S/N would happen somewhat of it's own accord, competition, but also generating programs that helped owners meet their requirements is not an altogether bad idea...I'm just not a big fan of subsidies.

Simply put, if you reduced active breeders to those willing to pass inspections, if you put into place an active TNR policy, and also put into place a clause allowing S/N for problem animals, then the numbers of unwanted animals should drop significantly in time.

post #63 of 63
Originally Posted by valanhb
The euthanasia numbers that concern us most are the number of "adoptable" animals put to death each year, right? Here's the truth: IF a feral cat comes into a shelter situation they are almost always immediately euthanized as "unadoptable" (under the same clause in the laws as vicious dogs and severely injured/ill animals). For the most part they are right, the average Joe Schmoe doesn't have the time, patience or desire to socialize a feral cat. So basically, that takes the feral cats in shelters out of the equation.
Haven't seen this policy before, But every single animal shelter is different. Maybe I've been lucky?

I know that if there is an underlying medical problem, or if the animal is too young, or if the shelter is at capacity, they will euth. But I've never seen them euth based on Feral vs "Roaming Non-Feral" it's a distinction which is somewhat hard to make.

Not sure of your point here, Seeing as every animal in a shelter is required to be S/N before adoption, the shelter animals don't really enter into the equation. The only role shelters play in the whole discussion is as an indicator of the external population. If shelters are not constantly at capacity, and if the shelter population drops over time then something is working. If a TNR program is implemented, then the number of Feral animals kept in a shelter are greatly reduced. But every good TNR program includes attempting adoption of ferals too.

Originally Posted by valanhb
So where are all of these adoptable animals coming from? From un-planned litters or BYBs. Which is where the mandatory S/N law comes into play. Where do you think the feral cat population came from in the first place?? From intact animals either abandoned or escaped from their homes. Just read through the forums to find, year after year, a pregnant stray showing up at someone's doorstep who begs for a home. These aren't ferals, these were owned pets at one time. Now they are contributing to the overpopulation problem because they weren't sterilized when they were owned.
All I can ask for here is statistics, not anecdotal evidence. Every study I've ever seen from reputable institutions suggest the majority of the problem is caused by feral animals. Hence my consistent call for TNR programs, over mandatory S/N. It would be easier to implement, and have a much broader effect.

Do BYBs exist? Absolutely, and they aren't helping matters any. But they aren't the main problem either.

Do unwanted litters happen? Yup, but the majority of the posts I've seen on these forums, and on other forums regarding unwanted litters, are linked to a misunderstanding of when to S/N. Let me restate a bit, it isn't that owners were not planning on S/N, it's that they didn't know when. Owners think that they need to wait a few months before having the procedure done, not realizing that domestic cats only take a few months to reach Sexual maturity. Early S/N is a must. Most of the health benefits attributed to S/N are nullified if the animal has already reached maturity. Is this the law failing, or is it irresponsibility, is it a failure of education...what can we blame it on?

My Point? The majority of owners plan on having an animal S/N, but it's not universally knowledge that this is a heavily time sensitive procedure. Mandatory S/N won't heavily benefit people that are already planning on S/N anyways.

Also adding an age clause into a Mandatory S/N law is very problematic. Age is a hard thing to determine, unless you know the birthdate, or have the animal from the first 2-3 weeks. Cats grow fast, but every breed is different too. Age clauses would be enforcable based solely on the discretion of the enforcing ACO, and that's a judgment that even veterinarians will have a hard time determining.

Originally Posted by valanhb
As for cost, man I WISH the fees were as low here as Spotz quoted! Ophelia cost almost $300, Trent was cheaper at close to $150. There are low cost S/N programs in Colorado, but I make too much money to qualify (as with all government programs), but that amount was very hard to come by and I couldn't have done it without some help from outside of my bank account. Does that make me irresponsible because I didn't have the cash?
Again, I can only quote the prices I have seen advertised from multiple vets over the course of the past few years.

Not going to address the irresponsibility question directly, too personal. I do have a few questions though.

By help from outside of you bank acct, do you mean that someone else helped fund this?
What age did you get the S/Ns done?
How long did you have the kitties before the operation?
Where did the kitties come from, and what did they cost?

I have a point here, but can't make it without extra info.

Originally Posted by valanhb
As for compliance, speed limit laws are notoriously low on compliance too. They can't possibly catch every person who speeds. Should we just get rid of speed limits? Even Murder, somewhere between (depending on jurisdiction) 30-50% of homocides are never solved with a conviction. Should we get rid of that? The problem with compliance on animal control issues is funding, period. Not enough people to do the job (could be said about the police too, considering the above examples). Even when additional funding is found through registration, fines, adoption fees, etc. in most states it goes into the General Fund and AC still gets a set amount. New Hampshire finally got they low cost S/N fund to have it's own account so the money from registrations goes directly to them, and it isn't just absorbed by the General Fund if they don't use it all.
Speed limits are an interesting topic, to answer your question simply. Yes AND No.

Murder, of the successful convictions, even these sometimes are erroneous. No, 50-70% success rate is a majority, so it is addressing the bulk of the problem.

I hear the funding argument all the time, but I've yet to meet many people willing to give up the extra money that would be needed to address funding issues. So since funding will always be an issue, new laws need to be made with a strong consideration to the financial impact. No matter how sound a law may be in theory, if the enforcement of the law is heavily dependant on funding, then the law is likely to be ineffective.

Mandatory S/N for every non breeder ranks up there with speeding. There is no way to ever enforce this law fairly. It requires too much time and manpower, which translates into money.

How funds are dispursed is a completely different topic, definately a major problem, and related but not worth sidetracking onto.


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