Dead Cats And Animal Welfare Do Not Mix

‘ANIMAL lovers have called for the resignation of the president of Australia’s peak pet trade industry association after he posed smiling for a photograph holding a dead cat.

Pet Industry Association of Australia president Steve Austin is pictured smiling with two friends as he holds a dead feral cat dangling by its neck off a piece of white rope.

PIAA chief executive officer Roger Perkins defended Mr Austin today, saying he was “having a bit of fun” after a day of hunting feral cats in the Kimberleys.

“The cats had been humanely shot and they were having a bit of fun at the end of a long day,” he said.’

Let me explain where I see the problem here. The issue isn’t so much what Steve Austin did – that cat may have been killed in a humane and painless manner – at least I would hope so. The issue here is the attitude. You don’t smile for a photo posing with a dead cat unless you have derived a degree of enjoyment from the killing of that cat. Feral cats may be major Australian pests and killers of wildlife but gloating at one cat’s death shows the kind of lack of respect that should rule this person out of any role in the animal welfare debate.

Let’s hope he gets the hint and steps down voluntarily.

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About Dr Vadim Chelom

Dr Vadim Chelom is a Registered Veterinarian, a writer and an educator

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