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Letter: Animal cruelty

Recently, The Recorder had two pictures of dogs in their newspaper: one group was posing while waiting for the postman, the other group was walking toward death. According to the Associated Press article titled Sochi’s Dark Side, “Thousands of stray dogs have been living amid the mud and rubble of Olympic construction sites, roaming the streets and snowy mountainsides, begging for scraps of food.” Instead of having the owners take responsibility for their pets, Russia kills the dogs.

The author quoted Nadine Kincaid, an Olympic volunteer. Kincaid said, “As an animal lover, for me that’s sad. But if they’re like stray cats, they can keep breeding and cause more problems, so I can see, maybe, why. She added, “It’s sad, but what do you do if you can’t control them?” Well, the obvious solution: pass laws holding the owners responsible for their pets.

Why does OUR society allow people to abuse cats? Cats shouldn’t be thrust outside to fend for themselves, left to roam communities and get hit by cars. That is animal cruelty. Have you ever seen stray goats, stray sheep, stray pigs, stray hamsters, stray rabbits or even stray dogs running around your neighborhood?

I rescued abandoned stray cats and have a female short-haired tiger for adoption. Please call 624-3311. People should be fined for mistreating cats. Solutions:

1. Pass bylaws requiring owners of indoor/outdoor cats to “fix” the problem of cats roaming our neighborhoods looking for food and sex.

2. Rabies and distemper shots.

3. Enforce existing Massachusetts laws. According to records at the courthouse, Mass. General Laws chapter 272, Section 77, Cruelty to Animals requires people to “provide food, drink, shelter, (proper) sanitary environment, and protection from the weather.” Pet owners can be punished by imprisonment in the House of Correction for not more than 2 1/ 2 years or fined not more than $2.500.”

Why are our police and other community officials failing to enforce Massachusetts laws protecting cats?

MURIEL E. RUSSELL

Colrain

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