Important facts on the big cat issue

I feel it is important to put some facts straight about the comments aimed at my letter about cats. I expected that cat lovers would try to defend their pets, it’s only natural, however there is a problem with cats without doubt.

I have been a cat owner in the past so was probably as guilty as the rest of cat owners until I became aware of just how many animals and small birds were killed, not killed to eat, just killed for the sheer pleasure by cats.

There are an estimated 10.3 million domestic cats and an estimated one million feral cats roaming the streets and woodlands, that does put an extra burden on our wildlife without doubt. Can you imagine the outcry if there was one million feral dogs roaming the streets?

As to the MPs having better things to do, well I think they have a duty to protect, not only our wildlife but also our health and our children’s health. To say that cats are free-roaming is not the answer, what were dogs before domestication, free-roaming?

The health of our children and adults is a cause for concern. Cats carry Toxoplasma gondii; it is estimated that there may be between 25% to 50% of adults in this country showing evidence of past or present infection of Toxoplasma gondii. There is concern for children from this infection and alarmingly for pregnant women; children can easily pick this infection up from lawns, sand pits etc, if a pregnant women catches this infection it can lead to the foetus developing congenital toxoplasmas. This infection is very serious as it could result in blindness or brain damage to the foetus.

There is one more important thing to consider, this country only has one wildcat, The Scottish Wildcat. This beautiful animal is in grave danger of extinction due to cross breeding with the feral cats loose in the Highlands. There are at present only 400 of these cats left in the world; what a shame it would be, that because of cats owners letting their cats roam free and go feral, the only wildcat species here would become extinct.

Sign the petition :- now to voice your concerns as well as mine.


Linacre Woods