Christine Yurovich Cat Alliance of Australia Inc and Lisa baker MLA Member for Maylands.
Sue Hedley SAFE, Joe Francis MLA Jandakot, Roz Robinson Cat Haven
Symposium 2012 (our 5th ) will be held on the 24th November at the Perth Zoo..
Thanks to all those that supported our 5th Symposium and a very special thanks to Lisa Baker MlA Member for Maylands and Lynn MacLaren MLC member for South West Regional and Joe Francis MLA Member for Jandakot for again supporting the symposium and being the main drive behind the new cat laws. We must also thank Microchip Australia for again donation our microchip scanner for our raffle.
It was great to see Sue Hedland from Safe Karratha who flew down tobe with us such an inspiration and major driving force in Animal rescue.
Lisa Baker MLA Maylands spoke on the WA Labor release of their animal welfare discussion paper covering all Animals "Strengthening Animal Welfare in WA. Lisa also spoke on the difficulty of getting other parliamentarians to take animal welfare seriously. She also spoke about the responsibility for animal welfare policing must be removed from the Department of Agriculture and Food and how it is a conflict with the departments goal of maximising agricultural output.
Lynn Maclaren MLC asked us to ask our local member of state partliament if they support theindependence of WA's animal welfare inspectorate from the Department of Agricultre and Food.
Joe Francis MLA Jandakot stated that the "animal welfare" is the greatest unrecognised political issue of his generation. Joe suggested that why not seize a cat until it is sterilised,microchipped and registed instead of paying a fine. He also stated that making a retrospective restrictions on cats per household would be unfair. Owners proving to be responsible and recognised foster carers will likely be exempt. He recommended banning dogs and cats from ecologically-sensitive areas only as the myth of their destruction of wildlife perpetuates the hatred of cats.
Cat Haven was well represented and it was exciting to hear for David Settelmaier about their progress to G2Z with the reduction in euthanasia rates from 76% in 2011, 58% in 2012 and to day down to 41%. I am also proud of their Snip and Chip program and the extention of that program to permanent and expansion of their foster carers . Freedom Bradbury also spoke about her recently attending the ACES international Conference hosted by the Helen Woodward Animal Centre.and as always Del Zimmermann spoke about the fantastic proactive work she is doing by working with the adverts in the paper and online such as Gum Tree by ringing people advertising cats and kittens to see if she can assist with cheap desexing to help stem the flow of unsterilised cats into the market.
Rick Walduck from Microchips Australia - says there are five national microchip registers with 1.9 million animals now registered, this has increased by 150,000 in only 12 months.
Natasha Tay from Perth Pets in Need working with Local Governments, rescue organisationas and the local public to help lost and found pets, unclaimed pound animals needing to be rehomed, The public seeking advise or new pets. Information on current legislation and animal welfare. This site has over 6,200 members and growing.
Linda Horton represented the Geline Control Council spoke on there being a place for the responsible breeding of cats. She also said that some breeders will take back their cats should they need to be rehomed. She was critical of the lack of detail inthe by-laws to the Cat Act 2011 and lack of publicity that needs to be put out to allay breeders concerns. Linda sighted the Logan City Councils model as being the model that they would like to see most councils adopt.
Sandra Ottley from Animal Protection spoke about the work they were doing and said they were generally not in favour of TNR except where the welfare of the cats could be guaranteed. Sandra also mentioned that they had an inexpensive method of parasite control administered in food for those that are caring for colonies as handling for other methods could not be achieved.
Natiel Mason from Nine Lives Cat Resuce spoke about TNR but in particular TNRM which is Trap,Neuter, Release, Manage. as she believed that Management of a colony was crucial. She said that the "catch and kill" method of cat management does not work. It is expensive and creates the vacuum effect. No research has proven that urban stray and feral cats have an appreciable impact on wildlife numbers. TNRM can comply with the Cat Act 2011 where cats can be microchipped to be registered to the colony.
Erica Honey of Disaster Management of Animals in Western Australia. Erica is doing her Masters in researching animal welfare emergency plans for WA. AWEM includes animal search and rescue, vet emergency, triage, rehabilitation, animal care , reunion and release. There are four stages of emergency management which includes Prevention, preparedness, response and recovery.
Late apologies were from Banjup Rescue and Petrescue due to illness.
Symposium 2011 was held at the Perth Zoo on 26th November.
It was deemed as one our most sucessful and that all those attended were hands on welfare and management people which gave it a life of its own. People coming together with a common interest and a common goal of putting the welfare of our cats first.
Brief Notes :Thank has to go to all the rescue groups that participated and for the AVA(WA) for a very informative address, Microchips Australia (who once again donated the Microchip reader that was won by 9Lives) and of course Joe Francis (via Tim Mayne) and of course thanks to Tim Mayne for taking on the task of speaking for both the RSPCA and Joe Francis whilst he is off fighting bush fires. Petrescue had us in fits with her presentation and thanks so much for the donation of 13 Redemption books that were snatched up very quickly. Del Zimmerman from Cat Haven has all that is required to be a stand up comic and had us in fits with "peoples excuse for not getting their cats desex". Lyndell wowed us with her professional presentation and I am sure the rangers will be contacting you soon for advice and assistance. Nat 9lives and Lorraine from Banjup Rescue were the most effected by the technical hitches but came through with flying colors and both brought up so excellent points and food for thought. Cat Haven has made some fantastic changes and major in roads into G2Z. It was also great to hear they are working madly on being pro active in front of the new laws being implimented. RIEWA talked on their pet friendly lease and I think that will go a long way to stop people abandoning pets due to "no pet policies". I did not manage to get my speach in with my flashy presentation but did get to have a quick say about TNR and commercial, industrial and farms feral cat responsibiliies plus abandoment of pets when property is sold or leased. We were all a bit stress because technology failed us ie apple computers need adapters and some programs only play on some computers so a huge thanks to Chris Rapoff from Pro Cam who was again videoing the symposium doubling as our technical support. Made some wondeful new friends and put a face to a few old friends via facebook and chat.
One thing that came across loud and clear is that the Public do car about animal welfare and are embracing new technology in the way of Facebook to let everyone know. Animal welfare is no longer a backyard phenomenon but a Global affair and via Facebook we have built alliances not only on a local level but world wide.
Video of the symposium will be posted within a couple of weeks so please stay posted.
Thank you one an all...Christine Yurovich President Cat Alliance of Australia Inc.
TNR - two strays with ear tipped.
Video's of guest speakers at this years symposium can now be viewed by clicking link below
Thanks to Petrescue for the fantastic work in uploading the video's and donation the fees for the uploading. http://vimeo.com/user2716577
some reflective notes on the day:
Despite being a poor second cousin to our eastern states counterparts for attendance which could have something to do with lack of population over a vast area we had some very new and progressive cat rescue groups join us this year one being 9lives(non kill) and another very progress lady Pat Anderson who you would all know from our first symposium undertaking the very sucessful Toodjay TNR program a couple of years ago and has now moved into a new country town Northam and is duplicating her sucess there. Some of the other smaller groups are gathering momentum.
There were expressed dissappointment at some of the entrenched larger animal welfare groups not being progressive enough over the years and some had actually reduced their ranger capacity which has left very little assistance out there for cats in trouble. But given credit these organisation have increased their holding capacity by fostering or expanding their cat programs.
There were some highlights with the Cat Alliance spay clinic progressing this year with the assistance of Eric Yeoh who has spent three years with Noah's Ark doing a similar program in both Singapore and Malaysia. The other is the new desexing and microchipping laws that despite some opposition will be imposed here in WA which will bring it in line with all other states despite it varied sucess in other states.,
Michelle Williamson from Petrescue gave and innovative and inspiring presentation aimed at marketing and increasing adoption from shelters. During her speach I looked around the audience and could see a number of shelters madly scribbling notes so hopefully some shelters who are normall full will be able to clear their shelters with some new innovative marketing strategies with the compliments of Petrescue.
Being in the front line of an average of 4 calls per day for help with cat problems via various councils you soon realised that there is no help for the cats or the people with a cat problem. Welfare groups do not have the capacity or have a waitlist of 3 months to attend to a problem. Most councils "do not do cat" so the cats stay lost, abandoned and causing problems. People then take the laws into their own hands mostly killing the cat/s or taking them for a drive some 10 kilometers away and dumping them. This is a very common comment I get when asking "so what did you do with the cat". Most cat rescue groups have down sized their ranger service or are overflowing so there is very little help out there at momen. In my experience only the smaller groups or individuals are trying to take up some of the slack. When the new laws come in Councils will "do cats" and they will have some new alternatives so some progress will be made. Talking with some of the councils they are already taking action by offering desexing programs to their rate payers. These councils are taking a proactive instead of reactive approach to cat management and with great sucess. I think with some new smaller non kill cat groups moving forward and finding like minded groups to allien with at the symposium there will not be a mass killing field along with the new laws as some people would think but more of a communial effort and hopefully an new force on the block with a spay clinic will help alleviate some of the pressures on all resources.
Special thank you to our sponsors on the day : Microchip Australia donated a microchip reader and funding, Houndstooth studios vouchers for pet photograhy, Allstock major supply of pet food, Purina pet foods with fantastic pet products and cat food and Petrescue (linking pets with new families) who donated 80 copy of the book Redemption a must read for Animal carers and welfare groups and last but not least from Claire Gick, Benotto Animal Management a wonderful gift voucher I am sure will ensure a well trained and obedient puppy dog -0410 343 413 www.benotto.com.au
Please scroll down to the bottom of the page for links to download the 2008 & 2009 symposium presentations and to view videos for the 2009 symposium
2009 Symposium a success
A successful Symposium for Cat Alliance with the completion of its Cat Welfare and Management Symposium 2009. This year's symposium focused on the new cat laws to be implemented here in Western Australia. The symposium was sponsored by Microchip Australia Pty Ltd who also donated a Trovan LID 560 Multireader which was won by Isobell Griggs, a long time volunteer of Cat Haven.
Representatives from all the cat welfare groups were invited to speak and we had a huge response with over 14 guest speakers who delivered not only inspirational talks but provided informative and progressive news on what was happening interstate.
The highlight was Val Mitchell's address on how the Cat Haven was born and the difficult times that had to be endured by those founders on bare sandy soils and small tin sheds. with wet towels the only source of cooling on our very hot summers.
The day was to discuss the new laws pending here in Western Australia which would incorporate Compulsory Sterilisation and Microchipping and was addressed by Joe Francis MLA who is in charge of seeing that these laws are implemented, the key to implementing these laws being " keep it simple."
The transcripts of each speaker can be viewed on site and the full video will also be posted to be viewed at your leisure.
We thank all those who participated and we look forward to next year's symposium where we can catch up with the new and the old from the Cat Welfare and Management Industry and their associates.
Opening speech for Cat Welfare and Management Symposium 2009
WELCOME TO OUR CAT WELFARE AND MANAGEMENT SYMPOSIUM 2009
THIS IS AN EXCITING YEAR FOR ALL INVOLVED IN CAT WELFARE AND MANAGEMENT AS WE ARE EXPECTING TO HAVE SOME STATE LAWS INTRODUCED FOR THE FIRST TIME HERE IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA
AS I LOOK AROUND I SEE SOME OF THE MOST DEDICATED PEOPLE WHO HAVE WORKED TOWARDS THIS GOAL. SOME OF YOU FOR OVER 40 YEARS SO OUR HATS GO OFF TO YOU ALL IT IS A THANKLESS TASK.
WE ARE OF THE BELIEF THAT TNR ALONG WITH THE NEW CAT LAWS WILL SEE A HUGE REDUCTION IN THE NUMBER OF CATS BEING EUTHANISED HERE IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA
WE BELIEVE THAT ANYWHERE BETWEEN 80-90% OF HOUSE HOLD CATS ARE DESEX BUT THAT 10-20% THAT ARE NOT DESEXED OF THE APPROX 200,000 HOUSEHOLD CATS IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA CAN EQUATE TO 20,000 FEMALE CATS HAVING OVER A 12 YEAR LIFETIME OFFSPRING OF 64 MILLION KITTENS.
THIS FIGURE CAN QUICKLY GET OUT OF CONTROL WHEN YOU CONSIDER THE NUMBER OF SEMI DOMESTIC AND FERAL CATS THAT ARE INTERBREEDING WITH OUR DOMESTIC CAT.
THIS IS WHY TNR IS AN ESSENTIAL PART OF THE TOTAL EQUATION AND CANNOT BE IGNORED.
FOR DESEXING OF THE HOUSE HOLD CAT TO SUCCEED YOU MUST BRING IN TRAP NUETER AND RETURN TO UP HOLD THE GOOD WORK DONE ON DOMESTIC CATS FOR WITHOUT THIS BACK UP THE SYSTEM WILL FAIL.
IN AMERICA TRAP NUETER AND RETURN HAS BEEN IN SINCE 1980’S (THIS ONLY MEANS WE ARE 29 YEARS BEHIND THE REST OF THE WORLD) iN THE US THEY HAVE FLEETS OF BUS’S ALL OVER AMERICA. ONE STATISTIC QUOTES DECREASED EUTHANIASIA RATES OF CATS FROM 17 MILLION CATS IN 1980 TO 4.5 MILLION IN 1995 THAT IS A HUGE REDUCTION AND AN ESSENTIAL REDUCTION BECAUSE WITHOUT TNR THERE WOULD BE VERY LITTLE EFFECT OF MANDITORY DESEXING.
AS YOU KNOW SOME LOCAL COUNCIL’S HAVE ALREADY BROUGHT IN SOME CAT LAWS. UNLESS TNR IS INCLUDED IN THESE LAWS THOSE EXISTING LAWS WILL HAVE NO POSITIVE RESULTS. WHEN SPEAKING WITH THE COUNCIL RANGERS OF THOSE COUNCILS THAT HAVE SUCH LAWS AS CURFEWS AND LIMITED NUMBER OF CATS PER HOUSEHOLD. I HAVE FOUND THAT THESE LAWS HAVE HAD NO EFFECT ON CAT NUMBERS. CURFEWS ONLY BRING OUT THE VIGILANTES WHICH MEANS MORE TRAPPED CATS AND MORE EUTHANSIAS
IT HAS BEEN SHOWN THAT ON IMPLIMENTATION OF THERE LAWS THERE ARE AN INTITAL RISE IN NUMBERS OF CATS BEING EUTHANISED BUT BECAUSE THE COUNCIL DID NOT ADDRESS THE ROOT CAUSE THOSE NUMBERS HAVE STAYED ELLEVATED AND STAGNANT AND WILL SO FOR THE DURATION OF THE LAW. SO THE RATE PAYERS A PAYING FOR STATUS QUO.
THE LAW “ NUMBER OF CATS PER HOUSEHOLD” THIS LAW DOES NOT APPLY TO A NOMAL HOUSEHOLD AS IT IS THE PROBLEM OF A SOCIO ECONOMIC DEMOGRAPHIC THAT HAS TO BE DEALT WITH VIA TRAP NUETER AND RETURN TO HAVE ANY EFFECT. PEOPLE WHO CAN’T AFFORD OR DO NOT HAVE THE MENTAL CAPACITY TO DEAL WITH A CATS “NEEDS AND REQUIREMENTS” CAN NOT DEAL WITH LAWS AND REGULATIONS. BUT THEY SHOULD NOT BE DENIED THE SOURCE OF A COMPANION. INSTEAD THEY SHOULD BE ASSISTED BY COUNCIL WITH DESEX AND MICROCHIP AND TNR.
WE NEED TO ALSO LOOK AT GOOD SOLID AND PURPOSFUL CAT LAWS THAT NEED TO BE ENFORCABLE. THIS COULD MEAN THAT WE MAY HAVE TO LOOK AT OTHER WELFARE GROUPS BEING GIVEN INSPECTION AND PROSECUTING RIGHTS TO EASE THE BURDON ON EXISTING WELFARE GROUPS.
WE NEED TO ASK WILL THESE LAWS BE FOR THE BETTERMENT OF CATS AND NOT FOR THE CONVENIENCE OF PEOPLE. WE HAVE TO ASK: WILL THESE LAWS REDUCE THE NUMBER OF CATS BEING EUTHANISED AND WILL THOSE LAWS STOP THE ABUSE OF CATS IN OUR COMMUNITY. IF THE ANSWER IS NO AS WITH MOST EXISTING ANIMAL WELFARE LAWS THEY ARE NOT SERVICING THE PURPOSE THEY ARE LEGISLATED FOR .
THIS IS NOT “A CAT PROBLEM” IT IS A “PEOPLE PROBLEM” . WE ARE IN A DISPOSABLE SOCIETY BUT IT IS TIME TO START TAKING RESPOSIBILITY FOR THE OUTRAGEOUS WRONGS WE HAVE DONE TO THE CATS OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA AND VALUE THEIR LIVES ON THE SAME LEVEL AS ALL OTHER LIVING CREATURE…ITS TIME FOR CHANGE.
IT IS NOW WITH GREAT PLEASURE I INTRODUCE OUR FIRST GUEST
JOE FRANCIS MLA
Click here to download 2009 Symposium presentations
Click here to view the 2009 Symposium videos
Click here to download 2008 Symposium presentations