Cats Running Wild in Austin, Texas

Feral cats are increasing at an alarming rate.

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The Feral Cat Society of Austin, Texas now believes the number of wild cats in the city is about 135,000 or another way to put it: for every five out of 670,000 people in the city there is one feral cat.

They're multiplying as fast as I can capture them and get them fixed, says John Lacaria, the societys president. And as if to say the problem isn't just in Texas, Wisconsin and Minnesota now have laws allowing cat hunting to cull feral cat populations.

In Austin, the Feral Cat Society and shelter Town Lake Animal Center are asking the city for $50,000 to start a city-funded program to trap and sterilize wild cats. There is also a broader movement toward mandatory spay/neutering for cats and dogs in Austin.

This year, Petco Animal Supplies of San Diego, California, gave the Feral Cat Society of Austin $1,000 for catching and sterilizing cats, Lacaria says. He says it paid for the trapping and sterilization of 30 cats.

Posted: Dec. 6, 2005, 3p.m. EST

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