Now, CMC to count cats

By Dilanthi Jayamanne

The Veterinary Department of the Colombo Municipal Council yesterday said it would carry out a census on stray cats by the end of this month as they were considered a public nuisance.

Chief Veterinary Surgeon, Dr. I. Dharmawardane said that within the first six months of this year there had been two rabid cats identified in the city.

However, the MC Ordinance did not make specific reference to cats as regards the spread of rabies. It referred only to dogs as potential carriers of the deadly disease. But, there was provision for action to be taken in respect of any stray animal considered a public nuisance and prone to rabies. He said that there had been two separate incidents in the past as well where a woman and a child had died after being bitten by a polecat and a domestic cat infected by the deadly disease.

Dr. Dharmawardane said that the Council received complaints from private and government sector organisations as regards cats. "We have to visit the Colombo Public Library several times a week due to such complaints," he said.

The chief Vet said that they would identify places full of cats and carry out sterilisation programmes to control the cat population as well. "We will also vaccinate them."

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