Stray Cats

Providing for Stray Cats
West University Place’s Animal Control Division periodically receives a call regarding a “stray” cat in a citizen’s yard. And while the estimated number of stray and feral cats in the United States is in the tens of millions, the number of truly “stray” cats in the City of West University Place is considerably less. More often than not, the cat in question is being fed, usually by several people on the street, without anyone taking responsibility for the animal or transporting it to a shelter out of fear that the animal will be euthanized. Stray and feral cats will not just hang around in your backyard. They are nocturnal hunters that have learned through hard experience not to trust human beings. Please do not just feed any cat that you see in your neighborhood. Under state and city law, this will make you a “harborer” (i.e., you are now the cat’s owner), and you can expect them to adopt you.

Turning In & Sheltering Strays
If there is a cat hanging around your yard, and it isn’t wearing any tags, and you have made arrangements with a humane agency, residents may borrow a trap for a $75 deposit. The deposit is refunded once the trap is returned in clean and working condition.  Please do this only after making a reasonable attempt to determine if the cat already has an owner that lives around you. There isn’t a leash law that pertains to cats, and cats are not restricted by law to stay on their owner’s property. Because of this, the City of West University Place’s Animal Control Division does not pick up and shelter cats simply because they are loose outside or in someone else’s yard. Cats are wonderful pets, and they do provide valuable pest control services for our beautiful city. If you own a cat, please remember that no one loves your pet as much as you do, and that you are responsible for your pet’s behavior and any damage to a neighbor’s property. Responsible pet ownership, as always, is the key to keeping the peace between neighbors.