Your Opinion: Feral cats create peril

Dear Editor:

Feral domestic felines are a peril to our ecosystem and the mortality of numerous small mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians, and even more so to their offspring.

Feral cats carry diseases and insects within and on their bodies that can be transmitted to humans and their offspring and domesticated pets.

It is sad that so many animal lovers have been caught up in the TNR movement (acronym for Trap/Neuter/Release) as opposed to scientific organizations such as The Wildlife Society and the Missouri Conservation Commission.

A feral domesticated cat is considered an exotic species to North America.

Exotic species are recognized as one of most widespread and serious threats to the integrity of native wildlife populations and natural ecosystems.

TNR programs that return feral cats to the wild do not do these cats a favor.

It is estimated that the life of a feral cat is roughly five years whereas a cat that lives within the confines of a home environment have been known to live as long as 17 years.

Why cannot the public be realistic; there are wild animals and there are domestic animals. When domestic animals have been turned into wild animals they should be euthanized when caught — all within the best interest of our ecosystem.

Issue-oriented letters to the editor in response to this or about other local topics are welcome. All letters should be limited to 400 words. The author's name must appear with the letter, and the name, address and phone number provided for verification. Letters that cannot be verified by telephone will not be published. Send letters for publication to editor@newstribune.com