It’s time for a National Cat Act

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The Predator Free New Zealand Trust, animal welfare agencies and others have been advocating for a National Cat Act to set expectations on cat ownership and the management of stray and feral cats.

Cat being microchipped.
Microchips (the size of a grain of rice) are a critical identification tool. Image credit: Ivonne Wierink

The Environment Select Committee have released a report which supports the need to legislate a nationwide cat management framework for cats to be registered, desexed and microchipped.

The report notes, “Such a framework already exists for dogs, and we believe it is time to apply the same approach for cats. We consider that a nationally consistent approach to cat control would provide a more effective outcome than bylaws.” 

NZ has the highest cat ownership in the world, with an average of 1.8 cats per household and estimates of several million feral cats. Our precious native taonga are particularly vulnerable to predation from cats.

With that in mind, please let our government know that this issue matters to us. We have a template email to send below; if you send this to your local MP, it will help spur the change that is needed to protect our native wildlife and reinforce responsible pet ownership.

The Predator Free New Zealand Trust adheres to our privacy policy and “we do not sell, trade, or otherwise transfer to outside parties your personally identifiable information.” 

Updated in 2024, this letter is also sent to the Minister of Conservation, Minister of Agriculture and Minister of Local Government.