FROM April 1, next year, all cats in the South Gippsland Shire will have to be contained within their own properties, if as expected, the shire council votes for a 24-hour curfew at next Wednesday’s council meeting.
And dogs will have to be on a lead everywhere in the town limits, except in parks, reserves and rail trails.
The recommendations follow extensive contact with pet owners including a four-week community consultation period in July last year and an exhaustive survey which attracted 959 survey responses, over half of which (552) were from dog and cat owners.
The Cat Curfew Survey received 491 responses of which only 56 per cent of those surveyed actually supported a 24-hour ban, but 80 per cent agreed some sort of curfew was warranted.
“There is a clear majority for the curfew to be implemented 24 hours a day. Of the community who support the implementation of the curfew (393), 269 or 68.4 per cent believe cats should be contained for 24 hours a day within the property boundary or by other means,” says the report to next week’s council meeting.