Monday, May 10, 2010

“Let cats deal with the rats”

“Let cats deal with the rats”
Letter from Dr Tan Chek Wee
05:55 AM May 10, 2010
I REFER to “Unwelcome visitors spotted in Orchard Road” (May 6) and “Oh rats! They’ve come for us” (May 7).

The culprits are really human beings with their “epidemic” littering. Killing the rats is just a knee-jerk response.

Perhaps Today can continue the report with pictures on how the rats behaved while stuck in the glue traps and how they are later killed. Some rats literally tear their skin off from sheer fright in their violent struggle.

A regulatory impact statement released by the Australian government cited a study that concluded that glue traps should be banned “because of the enormous distress that these traps cause, even if the trapped animals are found after just a few hours and then humanely dispatched”.

The few laws that protect rodents from cruelty either conflict with other laws or are ignored despite the fact that rodents have the ability to suffer and feel pain just as other animals do.

Glue traps are also dangerous to human health. Animals who are trapped on these devices continue to produce urine and faeces, which are sources of hantavirus.

Cats are a natural and more humane rat repellent.

Mr Robert M Corrigan, a rodentologist and research scientist for the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, conceded that some studies have shown that the smell of cats in an enclosed area will keep mice away.

I am sure the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to animals and the Cat Welfare Society would be most pleased to advise on how to deploy healthy neutered cats to do the job.

Read this "Glue traps are without a doubt one of the cruelest methods of killing animals that exists today."