Stray cats thrive almost anywhere in the urban jungle that is Singapore. That also includes condominiums and private residential apartment estates around the country. Many residential condominium complexes are homes to colonies of stray cats. Without proper management, stray cats will reproduce unchecked and may engage in nuisance behaviors such as fighting, howling, and spraying.
What is an MCST? Its an abbreviation for Management Corporation Strata Title, the name given to a management group (made up of proprietors/residents/tenants of the said property) that governs any private apartment, HUDC estate or condominium, as constituted under the Land Titles (Strata) Act (Cap 158). The MCST is the condominium town council and they are the go-to people to complain about anything that goes on within the estate. That includes the presence of stray cats. There are four options that apartment, condominium complexes can pursue to manage stray cats: 1) ignore them, 2) trap and remove, 3) institute a feeding ban or 4) trap, neuter and return (TNR)
1) The first option, while clearly no solution at all, is the one that is all too often chosen: ignore it and it will go away. Two cats become twenty in no time and the problem just gets bigger and bigger.
2) The second option, which at first glance may appear to be a solution, has its own shortcomings, one of which is the Vacuum Effect.
3) The third option, enacting a ban on feeding outdoor cats, is also one that condominium MSCTs feel will solve the problem. However, a prohibition on the feeding of stray cats will not guarantee a decrease in the number of cats if there is still a food source available, intentional or otherwise.
The above three options are the ones most employed by condominium/HUDC MCSTs in Singapore. If they actually solved the problem, Singapore would not have its current stray cat overpopulation crisis.
The only workable solution: TNR
The fourth option, Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), is the internationally accepted, effective and humane method of controlling stray cat populations. It is a full management plan in which outdoor stray cats, are humanely trapped and sterilised by veterinarians and evaluated. Healthy adult cats are returned to their familiar habitat, unable to reproduce. The numbers of cats will gradually reduce further as the cats naturally die off. New cats will be fended off by the existing cats, thus reducing the Vacuum Effect.
A comprehensive TNR program, in conjunction with a broad-based education program for residents or tenants, will result in fewer to no births, reduction of nuisance complaints by residents, the alleviation of public health concerns and reduced unnecessary culling.
Love Kuching Project will encourage condominium MCSTs to employ TNR and we have devised a costing plan that compares the cost savings of the TNR versus conventional pest control and culling. We aim to present TNR proposals to condominium MCSTs directly, through explaining both the vacuum effect, and how TNR is a more cost-effective pest control measure.
How You Can Help
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with the name of your condominium/HUDC complex, number of stray cats not neutered, name, and contact number of cat feeders (if any). We will thereafter contact the management to conduct TNR.
By pitching directly to condominium MCSTs that you link up with us, we can initiate TNR measures in your condominium or private estate from the top down, and link mediators with them to manage resident complaints. This will change the landscape of TNR in condominiums and private estates in Singapore. Help us make a difference for condo cats.
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