Torturing Cats in the Name of Kindness

Feral Cats, C. J. Strike Dam, Idaho, December 2017

Feral Cats, C. J. Strike Dam, Idaho, December 2017

Yes, WC has written earlier about the inexcusable evil that is Trap, Neuter and Return. But WC encountered a colony of these wretched animals at C.J. Strike Dam, on the Snake River, miles from any city or town.

This particular colony colony of 12-15 cats subsists on handouts, rotten fish carcasses and, very likely, food provided by some misguided soul living at the support housing for the dam. These cats were living in sub-freezing temperatures, gnawing on frozen rotten fish carcasses and stalking wild birds.

In the name of kindness.

You see, there are still cat lovers who think it is kinder to trap, neuter and rturn (“TNR”) these feral housecats so they can die of disease, starvation, predation and accident in the wild than to humanely euthanize them.

Never mind that they are an invasive species. Never mind that they ravage the ecosystems in which they hunt, killing billions – that’s not an exaggeration or a typo, billions – of songbirds and small mammals. Local birds and small mammals didn’t evolve with housecats; they are poorly adapted to surviving in areas where housecats hunt. TNR lets that slaughter continue. In the name of kindness to an invasive species. Despite what TNR advocates claim, the program isn’t very successful in reducing feral cat populations. But never mind that.

Ask instead: which is kinder, which is less hurtful: to allow these animals to suffer, leading short, miserable lives, or to painlessly and mercifully kill them by euthanization, stopping their suffering?

WC isn’t a “cat hater.” WC has had pet cats most of his life. WC and Mrs. WC have served as foster parents to three kittens as recently as this year. But WC’s cats were sterilized and kept indoors.

TNR is a stupid, cruel and failed technique for controlling feral cats. It permits the slaughter of native songbirds and small mammals to continue. It’s time to stop it.