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Council call to keep cats safe and secure
Date of Issue: 
May 17, 2024

East Gippsland Shire Council is urging cat owners to embrace cat containment laws, highlighting the significant benefits for both feline friends and local wildlife. By keeping cats within property boundaries around the clock, owners can protect their pets and contribute to the conservation of our shire’s native species. Pet cats that are kept contained tend to live longer, healthier lives, avoiding the risks of getting lost, injured or contracting diseases.

“Keeping cats in the home or on your property benefits everyone – including the cat,” Mayor Cr Tom Crook said. "It also minimises disturbances to neighbours and protects other animals."

“We know that cats are valued companion animals, but when owners let cats roam they are a significant problem that costs all ratepayers. Keeping your cat at home is part of being a responsible pet owner,” Cr Crook said.

“The legal requirement for cats to stay home is there for good reason and I urge residents to do the right thing.”

Roaming cats pose a significant threat to local wildlife, with predatory behaviours contributing to the decline and even extinction of native species. By keeping cats contained, owners can play a crucial role in preserving East Gippsland's rich biodiversity.

Tips for a happy cat home

Creating a stimulating environment at home is essential for a cat's well-being. Here are some tips to enhance your home for your feline companion:

- Climbing spaces: Provide both vertical and horizontal spaces for cats to explore.

- Safe toys: Keep your cat entertained with a variety of toys.

- Scratching posts: Multiple scratching posts help maintain their nails and prevent damage to furniture.

Escape-proof enclosures or cat-proof fence rollers allow cats to enjoy the outdoors safely. Walking cats on a lead and harness is another way to offer them fresh air and new experiences while keeping them secure. For detailed tips on cat containment, visit the RSPCA website.

Additionally, desexing cats is highly recommended as it reduces unwanted behaviours like fighting, spraying and the urge to roam. Desexed cats are also eligible for a reduced registration fee.

For residents dealing with stray cats, the Council provides free cat traps to humanely capture them, allowing Council’s Community Laws Officers to safely collect and impound them.

It is a requirement for dogs and cats aged 3 months and over to be microchipped and registered. Roaming dogs and cats that are registered and tagged will, in most cases, be taken back to their owner by a member of Council’s Community Laws team. The Community Laws team can also provide you with Council’s Pet Care and Management guide to help you safeguard your pets, other people’s pets, the public and wildlife.

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