WOODBRIDGE, Va. - Residents in Woodbridge say feral cats have taken over their neighborhood. They said they have alerted animal control in Prince William County about the issue, but officials said residents are required to trap the cats before they can respond.
Neighbors are now split on how to tackle the growing problem in their cul-de-sac.
“People feed them and when they feed them, they come back. I don't feed them,” said Roque Basallote.
“I was never brought up that way and I'm not going to see that. I wouldn't see anybody go hungry,” said Jim Spiker.
Spiker said he feeds the feral cats daily – and that is not all.
“I have built houses out of Styrofoam boxes and everything so they can sleep at night,” he said.
However, Basallote has been taking an opposite approach.
“I barricade all of my porch so they don't hang around here,” Basallote said.
Despite their different stances toward the nearly dozen stray cats on their street, both men said the county's animal control department should do more.
“The county cannot do anything unless it's in a trap and they will come by and pick it up, but it's hard to put them in a trap because they see you, they take off,” said Basallote.
“I have called the county and asked them to come out and trap it, but they say you have to trap them to get them in,” said Spiker. “I would like to see them be in a shelter somewhere myself because it's really not that healthy. But I’m not going to see an animal go hungry if I have anything to do with it.”
According to Prince William County police, animal control will “seek to humanely trap the cat if we receive reports that the animal may be sick or injured or if there is a report of an animal bite. There is no law currently prohibiting stray cats, unlike dogs where there is a required leash law in effect. The responsibility otherwise for stray cats would fall to the community."
There is no law currently prohibiting stray cats, unlike dogs where there is a required leash law in effect.