Tan is also known for his commentary on legal and social issues, many of which are published on his LinkedIn page. A new two-year pilot program called “Love Cats” was launched in October 2012 by Justice and Foreign Minister K. Shanmugam, allowing residents over 120 blocks in Chong Pang to have cats in their HDB homes. An animal rescuer, Fiona Loh, previously told Mothership that if cats are not moved by “hordes” of cats, they will eventually be abandoned. The HDB website states that cats are not allowed in homes, while dogs (HDB approved breeds) and small animals such as rabbits and guinea pigs are allowed. Louis Ng, MP for Nee Soon GRC and founder of the animal rescue group Acres, also questioned the ban in an October 2020 Facebook post, saying HDB`s concerns about cats “can be easily resolved.” “This is a community-owned project that requires sustained support from residents, local leaders and legislators. Their success depends on responsible pet ownership and resolving neighborhood conflicts among residents. Among other measures, CWS worked with the Chong Pang community to sterilize the cats to minimize the risk of discomfort and microchip them to strengthen owner accountability. These are necessary for the long-term success of this pilot project.
We can consider further expansion if the Chong Pang pilot project achieves these results and if there is strong community support in other parts of Singapore. He added: “Many, many, many people keep cats in HDB homes. We have a rule that we do not actively enforce. So why do we have this rule? » HDB`s reason for banning cats? She adds: “Laws could also require cat owners to microchip and register their cats, similar to what is currently done for dog ownership. This will prevent the irresponsible abandonment of pets and allow authorities to effectively prosecute and punish misguided animal rights activists who commit neglect and abuse. “Recent CWS polls show that there is a strong case for expanding the pilot and lifting the ban on cats in HDBs. CWS shared the poll results with AVS and various ministers to advocate for the repeal. We hope that steps will be taken to revise the legislation so that cat ownership can be legalized in the HDB and standards for responsible cat ownership can be established,” said its president Thenuga Vijakumar.
And small animals such as rabbits and guinea pigs can continue to live with their owners living inland. So why not cats? This regulation on banning cats has long been discussed by HDB residents and cat lovers. “It is equally important to promote best practices, for example by ensuring that cat owners lock their windows and doors to prevent cats from falling from heights and moving freely. This will help ensure a safer society for animals and humans. The SPCA sees an average of five cases of animals falling from height each week, half of them not surviving. There may be more, because these are just the cases we see in our clinic,” she says. “Can it be that only those who live in private apartments are entitled to cats? Or are condominium cats better educated and more polite? Are cats only for the rich? One user said: “If we give cats legal status in HDB, we can better protect cats and advocate for cat welfare. Adrian Tan, president of the Law Society of Singapore (LawSoc), wrote on his Linkedin profile that HDB`s reasons for banning cats were “horrific” and questioned the purpose of a rule that is not enforced. And although the cats are out of the bag and wandering the streets, they are not out of the books.
At least not yet with HDB. “Despite the ban, people continue to own and care for cats in HDB homes. There are also cases where cat owners practice “casual ownership” so that cats can roam freely for part of the day for fear of being punished for breaking the law. Lifting the ban while putting in place a strict system that ensures proper accountability will help improve cat welfare and minimize pet abandonment and neglect,” she says. Journalist Denise Chong echoed similar sentiments in a recent opinion piece. Citing the inconvenience of the inhabitants from cats to second-hand smoke and noise pollution. In response to a parliamentary inquiry conducted by opposition politician and Aljunied RCMP MP Leon Perera in March into pet abandonment, the DND responded that NParks investigated 225 cases of pet abandonment in 2021, a 25% increase since 2017. Of these cases, 11 people were fined, 21 people were convicted by a court and fined, and one was imprisoned. About half of the cases studied and half of the cases where additional measures were taken involved cats.