I read a letter you wrote in the newspaper about feral cats and felt compelled to reply.
Whilst I understand your response, I believe that people do not understand the effects of their actions in feeding feral cats.
I would be obliged if you brought the attached to the attention of your readers. It’s too late for me, I have to live with these creatures, but if it caused other people to pause and reflect, it may help someone else.
The question of feeding feral cats raises conflicting ethical questions.
1. Feed the cats, but not neuter them. This will result in a colony of cats with kittens, too big to feed. Is this in the interest of the cats? Short term yes, long term perhaps not. Definitely a problem for neighbours.
2. Feed the feral cats AND neuter them. This is in the interest of the cats short and long term. Stable feral cat colonies usually keep out new ferals. A limited problem for neighbours.
3. What is the feeder’s duty to their neighbours, assuming they find the cats offensive? Should they ignore them and not feed them? Ignoring them will probably result in some, but not many feral cats. A limited problem for neighbours.
4. Should somebody kill the feral cats? This will resolve the neighbour’s problem for a while but if there is food around, more ferals will move in.
I think number two is the best, because I value the welfare of cats as well as the welfare of humans.
Best wishes, Connie