The Drumheller and District Humane Society has held two forum sessions over the last two weeks to gather public concerns and support for establishing a cat registration program in Drumheller.
A second session was hosted on Tuesday night.
“People are saying that it’s going to get pushed through anyway, why even come,” said one resident in attendance.
“Drumheller is not a pet friendly town, it’s just another tax they’re slapping on us,” said another.
“If we didn’t want to hear their opinions we wouldn’t be holding these information sessions,” replied Jen Dick of the humane society. “Most people don’t even realize there isn’t a registry already in place.”
“It would only make sense that we’d require cat owners to have a licence,” said Darcy Nundahl, Supervisor of Community Enforcement for the Town of Drumheller.
There will always be people who will let their animals roam, says Nundahl, but he wishes to get through to the community that responsible pet owners are needed in Drumheller.
He said most of the town’s feline problems arise in rural Drumheller, kittens that are dropped off on farms.
“It’s unfortunate,” he said, “when they breed and spread we have a problem.”
Nundahl admits the town does not have the resources to search residences for cats, but having the option to register cats is a benefit to owners.
If their pet gets out, it allows bylaw to simply search a database and return the animal using minimal resources and saving the humane society from the burden of baby sitting.
Over 70 per cent of animal control’s calls are related to cat problems, a registry would save money and time.
As of now, Nundahl said the animal control is lending out traps to those having problems with cats roaming their yards.
“It wouldn’t be hard to change the legislation, but we may have a bit of an argument from cat owners who have house cats who never go outside.”
The humane society held a second information night on Tuesday, August 31, and now they will take the comments made by attendees to form a proposal for town council.
Jen Dick said there is not a concrete date as of now for making the request to council.