A council in Australia has introduced a 24-hour “cat curfew” in a bid to protect wildlife.
The controversial move from Knox City Council in Melbourne has been criticised by some local residents who believe the rule is unfair.
Under the regulations – which are coming into effect on October 1 – pet owners in the City of Knox will be forced to keep their cats at home all day.
The legislation says the felines should be kept in the property, garage or shed and only allowed into the yard if there is cat-proof fencing.
Cats will be banned from trespassing on other people’s property and rangers will go around to pick up any wandering felines they find in the city.
Pet owners who break the rules can be hit with hefty fines or court action, News.com.au reports.
The rule has been introduced to protect both cats and local wildlife, the council said.
The council’s website states: “Cats can still go outside, as long as it remains on your property.
“Cat enclosures and cat-proof fencing are some ways to stop a cat from wandering outside your property.”
Knox City Council Mayor Lisa Cooper said: “Much like the rules for dogs and other pets, cats won’t be allowed to roam freely from their owners’ property.
“When allowed to roam, cats are at a much higher risk of illness and injury.
“Keeping cats within their owners’ property also protects wildlife and prevents them causing nuisance for neighbours and their pets.”
A woman who owns a cat in the city told 9News : “We try to keep our cat in our yard, but sometimes he’s naughty and runs away or runs into the neighbour’s yard.”
This article by Chiara Fiorillo was first published by The Mirror on 2 July 2021. Lead Image: Cats in Knox City will be required to stay indoors from October 1 (Getty Images/iStockphoto).
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