Mount Pleasant officials looking to address city’s feral cat problem

MOUNT PLEASANT, Michigan (WYRT) – A change to the City of Mount Pleasant Animal Bylaws could come to address the city’s wildcat issue.

At a city commissioner meeting last week, commissioners heard a proposal that would amend the regulation to help the city and partner agencies solve the problem.

“This is a problem in certain neighborhoods and it is a very pronounced and uncertain problem,” said Lori Gillis, a city commissioner at the meeting.

Gillis said she had seen the wildcat problem firsthand.

“From someone who lives in a neighborhood that has feral cats and has had 15 feral cats in my neighborhood for about the last year, that would not just rip up every bit of sand that could be used for a litter box anywhere to use garages and boats as scratching posts, ”she said.

A series of complaints from city residents has led to a proposal by the Mount Pleasant Department of Public Safety to request a change to the city’s animal ordinance.

“We’re looking for some tools that will help ensure the safety, health and safety of the neighborhood, and the health and well-being of the neighborhood,” said Doug Lobsinger, coordinator of the department’s Neighbor Resource Center.

He said wildcat numbers are not a widespread problem, but they are trying to fix the problem before it gets out of hand.

“They transmit disease or cause nuisance in the neighborhood at night, various noises and their excrement and neighbors’ property,” he said. He continued, “It ends up having an impact on the health and safety of the neighborhoods.”

The biggest change to the ordinance would allow the city and partner authorities to confiscate stray animals if property owners don’t cooperate.

Berg Pleasant city manager Nancy Ridley said this was an issue that city crews had encountered before and that was blocking progress. She said the city will continue to follow trap, neuter and release guidelines if they are passed.

The proposal also addresses the maximum number of animals a person can have in the city, but we have been told that this will not change the current regulation.

For a full view of the proposal, click here.

City commissioners tabled the proposal last week because of a concern from the Humane Animal Treatment Society. This will be worked out in a meeting on Wednesday and a new vote on the proposal could take place next Monday.

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