Editorials

Cat Problem: City council action is appreciated 2015.11.04

Several neighbors in one area of Morenci are pleased with the action taken by city council at a meeting last month. They’re hoping that council’s decision to seek an injunction against a Union Street resident will result in far fewer cats roaming the neighborhood.

For several months now, new litters of cats have made their appearance in the neighborhood—more than two dozen have been counted—and it’s not a good situation for the animals. Many are struck by cars or killed by dogs, become hosts to fleas and worms, roam the neighborhood looking for food and, of course, leave behind their feces for homeowners to encounter.

Some kind-hearted residents can’t help but feed the cats and this helps prolong the problem. According to a city ordinance, if a resident starts to feed a cat, that person is considered the owner of the animal.

City council hopes to put an end to the problem by forcing a resident to get rid of the cats. An injunction was served last week and now city officials await the establishment of a court date.

Then comes the difficult part. If the resident doesn’t comply, it’s up to the City to take action. And how will city workers round up feral cats? It’s not like the situation in 2008 when a large number of cats was living inside a house. This time the cats roam an area at least two blocks from their home. Live-traps have been suggested, but how do you catch only the feral animals without also snaring someone’s pet?

We can only hope that the resident does his best to find a new home for the excessive number of cats, but this situation doesn’t bring a feeling of optimism. As far as neighbors in the area are concerned, it’s a problem that’s gone on for far too long and city council’s efforts are greatly appreciated.