Adopt a Cat of Concord 2012
Adopt a Cat of Concord (Massachusetts) is a 501(c)(3) organization (application in progress) seeks to help cats of all kinds in a no-kill setting regardless of age, feral status, and health condition; see www.adoptacatofconcord.org
Below are Adopt a Cat's positions on Articles 44, 45 & 46, along with Ms. Lodynsky's response in BLUE
of a Concord Animal Control Officer
We would embrace the help of a compassionate Animal Control
Officer to work with cats, wildlife, as dogs.
We encourage the enforcement of the current rabies vaccination
requirement but want to emphasize
the need to have a knowledgeable Officer who will be sensitive to existing
TNR (trap, neuter, release) cats that are being fed and cared for by
caring residents around the community. These
cats are vaccinated, spayed/neutered, and examined by local veterinarians so are
in compliance with the vaccination requirement.
This Officer should also be sensitive to the large
population of feral (community cats) in the Concord area that need to be
protected from inhumane treatment and conditions.
The primary issue with working with community stray cats is that there is
no physical shelter here in Concord which is a very important part of this type
I agree – the ACO needs to be trained and educated on the handling of ALL animals AND wildlife in order to perform the necessary duties effectively and appropriately. The management of feral cats is not covered by any of these Articles, but I agree - the ACO should have a sensitivity to the feral situation in Concord.
Shelter question: see #46
vaccination, and regulation of cats
We encourage the requirement the existing state law for the
rabies vaccination of cats. However
the actual licensing of cats for that purpose would be difficult to enforce.
Having cats wear license tags is not the same as with dogs.
Many cats do not tolerate collars or find ways to remove them.
Currently cat owners are give vaccination tags by their veterinarian and
should be kept with the owner to show evidence of the cat being vaccinated.
Other methods such as tattoo or microchiping can be used to identify the
cat, owner, and vaccination status.
Tattoo and/or microchipping are
acceptable means of identification and should be incorporated…
The concept of impoundment of cat that are found either not
wearing a tag or wandering at large in someone’s yard is not practical since
there is no animal shelter in Concord. Surrounding
shelters are overloaded and would not be able to comply with a 6 day grace
period to coordinate the cat as stated in the warrant.
The issue of utilizing neighboring
shelters or facilities is still under examination, and until all possibilities
have been explored, this is still an area open to debate and resolution at the
Town Meeting. Information from “Adopt A Cat of Concord” detailing their
research and findings is appreciated.
Feral community cats of course would not fall into this
category. These cats have a different requirement
in that a professional is needed to evaluate.
The cat would need to be evaluated to determine if
it is lost, a stray, in need of TNR
to be returned where it was found, or a homeless friendly cat in need of a new
home which is another way shelters and groups like ours can help.
Rather than fines a better enforcement is needed to
encourage the cat to be vaccinated or provide help if the owner cannot afford
the cost of a veterinarian office visit.
We do not see this warrant as well formulated in that the
Town Manager and Selectman are not the ones who should formulate responsible pet
ownership guidelines. The
requirement is really part of the Animal control officer’s responsibility and
other experts in the field who can help the Officer along with cat owners in
Concord to accomplish the goal of dialogue and cooperation between residents and
Agreed; although basic guidelines
from other successful programs have been drafted, input is desirable from local
specialists, including the ACO (see section on Responsible Pet Ownership).
Other groups such as the Merrimack Feline Rescue Society (Catmobile)
and Alley Cat Allies are experts in the field of stray feral cats, their care,
and the required treatment. Adopt a
Cat of Concord always encourages thru our adoption policy that all owners should
spay/neuter, vaccinate, and accept an indoor only policy for their cats.
However we do respect individual owners rights to allow their cats access
to the outdoors. We do offer
alternatives to keep their cats safely indoors and safe outdoor enclosures, cat
fencing or attached pen/home enclosure ideas.
I would be very interested in viewing what you have to offer for outdoor enclosures; these alternatives are effective solutions. I am assuming you encourage these when you state you "respect the owners rights to allow their cats access to the outdoors" after having them accept an "indoor policy" for their cats...
updated April 13, 2013 send email