Culling sends wrong message to children
Thu, May 15, 2008
my paper

I REFER to the two letters about stray cats by Ms Florence Goh and Madam Jacqueline De Souza.

I am glad to note that Ms Goh said she certainly did not condone the killing of animals, because some town councils cull stray cats in response to residents' feedback.

Many neighbourhoods do have a cat management programme called Trap-Neuter-Return-Manage and it has been successful in the reduction of the cat population.

I am not surprised by Madam De Souza's fear of stray cats spreading diseases, as this perception has been perpetuated by town council posters on not feeding strays.

However, we are at greatest risk of contracting diseases from fellow human beings on crowded trains, buses, shopping malls, for example.

A call for the removal of stray cats in the neighbourhood would lead to the rounding up - and culling - of the animals by pest controllers.

Is this the message we want to send to our children - anything that is deemed a nuisance is to be killed?

Rather, this is a great opportunity to educate school children on how the problem can be addressed with a more humane approach which includes sterilisation.

This will certainly inculcate the spirit of compassion that is sadly lacking in our increasingly materialistic society.

Dr Tan Chek Wee


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