I have a major concern with the cat population explosion here in Scioto County. Having lived in this area for almost nine years, I can certainly see that the cats are really taking over. It is nothing to drive through Portsmouth and see dozens of cats, none wearing collars/tags, roaming the streets late in the evening. Wheelersburg has the same problem with cats roaming free. West Portsmouth is no different. Even the rural parts of the county has the same issues with feral or unclaimed pets that people feed but ‘do not own’.
I live on Careys Run, just a little ways off Rt. 52, and my neighborhood is FULL of free-roaming cats. There is a neighbor who feeds them but then she tells people they aren’t hers. Now, I understand having pets. I also understand feeling sorry for the ones who live outdoors but if she is going to feed them, then according to the O.R.C., they belong to her after she feeds them for three consecutive days.
Over the last three years, give or take, these same cats have produced dozens of unwanted kittens, used the neighborhood as a litter box, torn into garbage, destroyed paintjobs on cars and countless other things. Personally, they have destroyed my garage, used my vegetable/flower beds as litterboxes, urinated in my vehicle, broken up boxes of glassware in the garage, had kittens in my garage, killed hundreds of pedigreed rabbits and bunnies from my rabbitry (I breed and show rabbits), killed my chickens and pigeons and the list goes on. I have contacted her landlord who says there is no problem, even threatened to sue him. He has done nothing about this problem. According to him, I am the only one in the neighborhood who has ‘a problem with his tenant having cats’. WHAT!? He should ask the rest of the neighbors how they feel about walking out of their houses and stepping in a pile of cat crap. He should ask about the garbage being ripped up, the footprints on the vehicles, etc.
I have read the O.R.C. regarding animals and it seems to me that there needs to be something on the books somewhere as to the owners being held responsible for their cats and the destruction they cause. Don’t get me wrong, I have cats, all spayed/neutered, and in the house. If mine were outside causing problems, I’d try to do something about it or stand good for the damages. Instead, there are probably close to fifteen cats still roaming the area and they all belong to one woman. I think its time to get something done about the problem.
Since the O.R.C. does not have anything specific regarding the cats and ownership, I think it is about time that the County do something. We need specific laws to help with the cat population and to hold the owners responsible for the damages. I’ve given this much thought and maybe its time that the County Commissioners issue a ‘cat tag’. Sure, charge for it. Make the owners of outdoor cats have them spayed/neutered and tagged. Also, we need to be able to take the cats into the Scioto County Dog Pound and have them humanely euthanized if they do not belong to us (and have no ID Tag on them) and they are trapped in a live trap. I’d gladly pay $5 a head to have them put down since the owner will not keep them confined or be responsible for the damages they have caused.
Something needs to be done regarding this over-population issue before it gets worse. It is pretty bad when you can’t walk out of your house to get in your car without finding a fresh ‘pile’ on your steps or right in front of the car door! We need some kind of relief from the cat hoarders who think they are doing the cats a favor by letting them roam and cause problems for others. These problems need to end and soon!