Tracking possible or actual bans on pet cats and dogs

The village of Omaui, on New Zealand’s South Island, has proposed stopping residents from replacing their pet cats after they die, in an effort to protect New Zealand’s native animals. Other places – particularly colonized islands – are considering similar measures to protect their own wildlife. 

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April 2018:

  • Australian island proposes banning cats and dogs –  Cats and dogs on North Stradbroke Island, part of the Australian state of Queensland, could be banned, according to a leaked draft resolution proposed by  local government and community groups. The leaked document cites at least 24 incidents of domestic dog attacks on kangaroos, wallabies and koala, resulting in 23 deaths, within six months (RedandCity bulletin).

September 2018:

  • Tasmania’s Bruny Island considers limiting cat ownership –  Kingborough Council has drafted a by-law which includes the compulsory de-sexing and micro-chipping of domestic cats, a limit on the number of cats per household, the 24-hour containment of domestic cats and a ban on the feeding of stray or feral cats, the council’s cat management officer told WikiTribune. This is necessary, “to manage the adverse impact of cats on key biodiversity, agricultural and tourism assets,” Kaylene Allan said.Tasmania’s Director of Local Government has to approve this by-law first, and if it is certified as satisfactory, public consultation will commence later this year or in early 2019. Allan told WikiTribune that a community survey of nearly 700 found 66 percent strongly support by-laws requiring responsible management of pet cats and 74 percent think managing the impact of cats on the island is “very important.” The by-law is expected to come into effect in July 2019.

New Zealand

August 2018:

  • Council in Omaui region of New Zealand’s South Island proposes banning cats – The council called for all domestic cats in the Omaui region to be neutered, microchipped and registered. After a pet cat dies, residents would then not be allowed to get another (The Guardian). The proposal is designed to protect New Zealand’s native animals. Ecologist John Flux argues that one unpublished 2001 research report on 130 cats had the same findings as his study of his two cats, which found that the cat’s main diet was rodents, which do far more harm to native wildlife than cats do, meaning that the cats are in fact beneficial.

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  • Is it illegal to own any animals in your area?
  • Are any domestic animals considered a risk to wildlife in your area?

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