NFL player loses court case over cats

NFL player loses court case over cats

There are 33 comments on the The Indianapolis Star story from Mar 6, 2007, titled NFL player loses court case over cats. In it, The Indianapolis Star reports that:

A woman who fed and watered a family of four wild cats living under her neighbor's house does not have to pay for their damage to his crawl space.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at The Indianapolis Star.

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Honey Love

Raleigh, NC

#1 Mar 6, 2007
Jason, your parents must be so proud of you! Go back to Charlotte. Indiana doesn't want losers like you.
Jim Wyatt

Florence, KY

#2 Mar 6, 2007
Why is it acceptable for cats to run free when dogs must be contained? I have neighbors that let thier cats roam, defecating and urinating everywhere.
Carolina Girl

Salisbury, NC

#3 Mar 6, 2007
Jim Wyatt wrote:
Why is it acceptable for cats to run free when dogs must be contained? I have neighbors that let thier cats roam, defecating and urinating everywhere.
These are feral cats not pets, there are also wild dogs that roam free. These all come from one place - irresponsible owners that do not spay/neuter their pets, that let them run free, or they get loose and run away, etc... If people would spay and neuter their pets, these numbers would greatly decrease... at some point some of these animals were once house pets that got loose and never returned home, had litters out in the wild and all they know is how to try to survive.

Your neighbors should be held responsible for not cleaning up after their cats. If you have an HOA you just have to show them proof of the cat doing that. However, if you don't have an HOA, there is most likely a city ordinance that states they must clean up after their pets. You can report them and they can be fined. I have the same issue with people letting their dogs poop in my yard. I don't promote having indoor/outdoor pets if they are your family pet.

Carolina Girl

Salisbury, NC

#4 Mar 6, 2007
Way to go Helen! Our thoughts are with you all the way down here in CHARLOTTE!!! You can help us with the ferals here anytime!
JBOY

Indianapolis, IN

#5 Mar 6, 2007
I agree with Mr. Wyatt, why do dog need to be contained, but cats can roam. A feral cat got into my garage, making a mess, killed wild birds. But was chastized by the lady who was feeding it that I was wrong to chase it out of my garage and yard. These people love these animals so much, they should take the cats into their own house.
Margie Glah

West Chester, PA

#6 Mar 6, 2007
Yeah for Helen Middleton! I'm guessing that Mr. Baker thought that because he is a professional with the Panthers that he could run right over Ms. Middleton and that somehow he wouldn't be liable for the damage. We need more people like Ms. Middleton in this world who are willing to stand up for the innocent animals who need our protection.
Rainbow

Carmel, IN

#7 Mar 6, 2007
Yeah, I don't really agree with this. Apparently the law says that if she takes care of them as ferals, she's not responsible for their actions. Yet on on the other hand, cats are protected and you can't poision them like rats or mice, so the guy has no way to get rid of them.

So, if you have a problem with feral cats, you are pretty much screwed either way. You can't force the cat feeder to stop, as there is no legal recource. Nor can you hold them responsible. You also can't poison or remove them.
Carolina Girl

Salisbury, NC

#8 Mar 6, 2007
Rainbow wrote:
Yeah, I don't really agree with this. Apparently the law says that if she takes care of them as ferals, she's not responsible for their actions. Yet on on the other hand, cats are protected and you can't poision them like rats or mice, so the guy has no way to get rid of them.
So, if you have a problem with feral cats, you are pretty much screwed either way. You can't force the cat feeder to stop, as there is no legal recource. Nor can you hold them responsible. You also can't poison or remove them.
You can remove them, they can be trapped and relocated
Rainbow

Carmel, IN

#9 Mar 6, 2007
Carolina Girl wrote:
<quoted text>
You can remove them, they can be trapped and relocated
This may be a naive question, but I thought it was against the law to dump animals. How would trapping them and moving them be any different from dumping them?

And why would someone else want them in their neighborhood?
Miss Manners

Carmel, IN

#10 Mar 6, 2007
Feeding stray cats that are living under your neighbors home is really not very neighborly.
Sharon Musgrove

United States

#11 Mar 6, 2007
The women in this case was doing a service to the community by taking care of animals people had probably dumped. She should not be charged for helping poor animals that no one wants . If any thing she should be awarded for helping them. Society has so many things backwards , award the bad and punish the good. It is just crazy .
Darwin Award Official

Birmingham, AL

#12 Mar 6, 2007
she followed the law.. case closed
what if

AOL

#13 Mar 6, 2007
to all you nay sayers......yes, feral cats are wild. very timid, afraid and untrustworthy. made that way by YOU the public. some of these cats were tame at one time. owned and fed and housed by people like YOU. you wouldn't think of moving and leaving your kids or spouse, but a lot of YOU people move and do NOT take your pets with you.. YOU leave them for people like Helen Middleton to feed and house and spay and neuter. these poor cats and dogs are left in famillar surrounding with no one to take care of them. unlike humans, there is no welfare system set up for them. so they must rely on YOU the public. i'll bet most of you people who complain contribute to humans in need. you give to charities, panhandlers, relief programs, tornado disasters, etc.etc. why do YOU not have a heart for an animal who cannot care for himself without human help? these animals suffer from hunger, weather conditions, traffic, and most of all horrible ABUSE. just the other day a man( and i use the term loosely) sent his girlfriend the head of a kitten via the mail because he was mad at her. how CRUEL. no wonder they hide in garages, and crawl spaces. we are all GOD's creatures and need to take care of one another. INDY FERAL and other organizations have set up ordinances with INDY and surrounding counties to protect these animals. you can now receive hugh fines and a LOT of JAIL TIME for animal abuse. i hope some of you people, and i know a lot of you are good people, who just didn't understand the plight of these feral and displaced cats kittens will read this and at least try to not hate these little guys. i needless to say am happy for the verdict. have a nice day
what if

AOL

#14 Mar 6, 2007
and by the way.....if you want to learn more about feral and displaced or stray cats and kittens and how you can help, contact www.indyferal.org i think you will be glad you did
Rainbow

Carmel, IN

#15 Mar 6, 2007
what if wrote:
and by the way.....if you want to learn more about feral and displaced or stray cats and kittens and how you can help, contact www.indyferal.org i think you will be glad you did
That's all well and good, but I want to know what I, as a homeowner and property owner, can do if I have a problem with feral cats. I cannot poison them, because that is inhumane and against the law. According to this judge, I cannot hold my neighbor responsible if they are feeding them or otherwise taking care of them. If they have been through TNR, their ears are tipped and animal control will not take them, nor will they accept them if I trap them. I can trap them and dump them somewhere else, but that is against the law as well -- and only moves the problem on to someone else.

So what is it that a homeowner can do if they have a problem with feral cats?
Cpetr13

Carmel, IN

#16 Mar 6, 2007
Rainbow wrote:
<quoted text>
This may be a naive question, but I thought it was against the law to dump animals. How would trapping them and moving them be any different from dumping them?
And why would someone else want them in their neighborhood?
Relocating ferals is done so that they go from colony to colony; they are not just dropped off a few blocks away. There is a caretaker for them at the new location.
Feral cats keep down the mice and rats found in every neighborhood situation.
Cpetr13

Carmel, IN

#17 Mar 6, 2007
Miss Manners wrote:
Feeding stray cats that are living under your neighbors home is really not very neighborly.
Of course it is. More importantly, it is far more HUMANE than letting them starve. This jerk knew the cats were there and didn't do anything about it for months, and then cries that they caused $2000 worth of damage? And how does he know it was the cats? Raccoons and opossums are usually found in the same area you will find feral cats.
Cpetr13

Carmel, IN

#18 Mar 6, 2007
Rainbow wrote:
<quoted text>
That's all well and good, but I want to know what I, as a homeowner and property owner, can do if I have a problem with feral cats. I cannot poison them, because that is inhumane and against the law. According to this judge, I cannot hold my neighbor responsible if they are feeding them or otherwise taking care of them. If they have been through TNR, their ears are tipped and animal control will not take them, nor will they accept them if I trap them. I can trap them and dump them somewhere else, but that is against the law as well -- and only moves the problem on to someone else.
So what is it that a homeowner can do if they have a problem with feral cats?
If they haven't been through TNR/registration, then ACC can move them. If they have been registered, indyferal or the registrating body can move them. What you need to understand is that there is what is called the "vacuum effect"; when ferals are removed from an area, there will almost always be a new group of ferals or species with similar tastes (raccoons, opossums) that will move right in. The best way to rid yourself of ferals is to simply change the environment that attracts them to begin with. In the case presented inthe news, all the jerk had to do was fix the hole that allowed the cats into the crawlspace to begin with. All he did was scoop mulch near the entrance, which is pretty pathetic.
Dolly1

Indianapolis, IN

#19 Mar 6, 2007
For Rainbow, I am a big cat fan but I understand your dilema as well. www.indyferal.org has several resources for things you can do to deter feral cats from your property. Please visit their site.
Rainbow

Carmel, IN

#20 Mar 6, 2007
Cpetr13 wrote:
<quoted text>
If they haven't been through TNR/registration, then ACC can move them. If they have been registered, indyferal or the registrating body can move them. What you need to understand is that there is what is called the "vacuum effect"; when ferals are removed from an area, there will almost always be a new group of ferals or species with similar tastes (raccoons, opossums) that will move right in. The best way to rid yourself of ferals is to simply change the environment that attracts them to begin with. In the case presented inthe news, all the jerk had to do was fix the hole that allowed the cats into the crawlspace to begin with. All he did was scoop mulch near the entrance, which is pretty pathetic.
I have been through this rigamarole. My problem is that my neighbor is feeding them, so they are attracted to the area. She won't stop feeding them, already asked. I call Indy Feral but they took her side since the cats have been through TNR. Animal control won't deal with it because they've been TNR'd and their ears are tipped. I raise rare lillies and the cats are utterly destroying my business via digging and using these beds for bathrooms. I should add, I've lived in my home 15 years and this did not become a problem until 2 years ago, when my neighbor moved in and started putting food out every night. I never used to see cats and now I see about 10 per day (usually in my yard, of course).

I can't trap them, Indy Feral won't move them, she won't stop feeding them, this judge says the feeders aren't responsible, and I'm not cruel enough to poison them. There needs to be some sort of recourse here for homeowners who don't want cats all over their property. I guess it's time to move.

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