I thank Brian (Wooddell) for mentioning what we are trying to do to control the cat population on campus with FACT (Frogs And Cats Together). I would like to point out that the group (and all feral cat groups) are run by volunteers who put in a lot of time and effort to help campus cats. If you would like to learn more about our activities, join us in the Brown-Lupton Student Center next Monday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. A table will showcase trap-neuter-release and our campus cats.Although I appreciate the beauty of a soaring predator, I have a few suggestions that are more palatable and much more efficient. The feral cat problem is actually caused by humans, and there are things we can do to control it. As long as humans do not treat their cats responsibly, there will be feral cats.
1) Spay and neuter your pets! Many kittens are born as a result of unsterilized cats allowed to roam at night.
2) Keep your cat indoors. The lifespan of a free-roaming cat is half that of an indoor cat. Why would you deprive yourself of years of enjoyment with your cat? It is a myth that they must be allowed outside. One of my four cats used to be outside, but now she is inside and perfectly happy.
3) Realize what responsible pet ownership is: proper nutrition, sterilization, regular vet visits and love from you.
4) Do not get a pet if you are not in the proper environment to care for it. If you live in the dorms, do not get a kitten.
The attitudes I hear concerning urban wildlife amaze me. We take over a habitat, the animals adapt and then we are surprised when we see them. TCU is home to all kinds of creatures such as raccoons, opossums, rodents and snakes, none of which are interested in bothering humans. They want food, water and shelter and will occasionally mix with us to acquire these things. Treat those sightings as a blessing and not some fearful curse. Of course if they present a real health issue, then other humane solutions need to be presented.
God put animals on the Earth not just as an important part of nature, but for us to watch over, to make us laugh and to learn from. I want to be a part of humane solutions to the problems we have created for the animals, and I want to hear informed discussion, not ignorance or silliness.
Cari Alexander, music librarian, director of FACT