A Sydney council is looking to introduce laws that would ensure cats are kept locked up indoors and their owners fined for allowing them outside.
Randwick City Council’s new Labor mayor Kathy Neilson last week pushed for a “cat committee” to be established as the motion to introduce the pet restrictions passed.
In addition to cat owners being forced to keep their felines indoors, the plan will also consider an increase in registration fees.
News Corp reports residents who allow their cats to roam free or defecate in public places or neighbouring properties could also be fined, in line with penalties already in place for dog owners.
The strict move is part of an attempt to protect local flora and fauna, the council says.
Cat-loving Liberal councillor Harry Stavrinos has slammed the proposed new rules, saying they would effectively penalise responsible owners.
“It’s very unfair to be targeting the owners of cats. It’s just outrageous,” he told news.com.au.
“It will not be able to be police these archaic and laughable laws and it will be a huge waste of time.
“We’ve got more serious things to do and it can’t be the cat police and send people out to watch cats defecating on lawns.”
Cr Stavrinos said hiking up registration fees would make it difficult for elderly pet owners or those with disabilities, who rely on the pets for companionship, living on fixed incomes.
“Increasing the fee just makes life more difficult for these people who rely on … (cats) for therapy, love and relaxation.”