Monday, February 12, 2007

Cats in Flats

To Revive the Kampung Spirit HDB has to put its own ear to the ground and scrutinise its own Heart

A letter in today's online Forum about the HDB rule.

Someone wrote in yesterday to ask if it was true that cats were not allowed in flats - this person said that they did not want to break the law, and if so, he or she didn't want to get a cat, though he or she had been thinking about it. It just goes to show - the law penalises people who WANT to follow the law and are responsible, whereas people who allow their cats to wander do not get into trouble, as was seen in the article in the New Paper yesterday.

I had actually gone down to see the flat in question because the Town Council requested we go down. No one answered though I knocked and knocked and a neighbour told me that they make it a point not to open the door though she was certain someone was inside. I left a note and they never called me back. I was also told by a neighbour that when they do get a warning from the HDB, they just dump all their cats downstairs and that they had just done so recently prior to my visit. From what I understand, the TC and the HDB also went down with similar results. Clearly these aren't responsible individuals - after all, surely the cats aren't the ones throwing defecation down at their neighbours' window sills.

HDB however does not care what happens to the cats after the fact, nor if these cats are dumped into the estate as long as they're not in the flat. This is a very short term view and doesn't actually address the problem - the problem is the owners and the fact that they are irresponsible, not the cats per se. Removing the cats does not make the owners more responsible - what should be penalised is the owners' behaviour, not the ownership of the cats! If not, it does not encourage responsible ownership but does the converse. In addition, it causes a problem of abandonment in the estate.

Interestingly, one-third of the random people polled wanted the rule to be enforced, but another one-third were KEEPING cats in flats. Also interestingly, and as I suspected, the fine has never been enforced against anyone.

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Anonymous ej said...

Interesting letter by Ms Goh Boon Choo. Bring back the kampung spirit and bring home the cats.

12/2/07 10:44 AM  
Anonymous Autumnpiglet said...

The standard response from HDB again in the New Paper article. Don't the person who says that find that he/she is being illogical?

Stating that shedding fur is a reason for banning cats. Really illogical.

12/2/07 11:07 AM  
Blogger Dawn said...

ej - I like that, that should be a tagline :)

12/2/07 11:12 AM  
Blogger Guttercat said...

Hmm, HDB did say that up to now, all of the 'offenders' removed their felines within the grace period, hence noone's been fined... yet.

Of course, 'intact' kitties would cause ruckus of some sort, but a little trip to the nearest vet would sort that out in no time.

12/2/07 2:55 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

12/2/07 3:00 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Keeping the cats indoors would stop all the problems of defecation in public areas too of course.

12/2/07 3:01 PM  
Blogger Carol said...

Hey, its a nice post..

Just check this out
pet ecards

12/2/07 7:06 PM  
Blogger vegancat said...

Read about how the" "kampong spirit" went into action to save a "stray" dog.

"The AVA van turned up at the area of blk 830 to catch the dog... someone had made a complaint.
This much-loved sterilized female dog has been around for about 3 years. She is very tame and friendly, even with the community cats..
Many residents, including Az and other Malay families, came down to plead with them. Finally the dogcatchers agreed to come back in a few days time."

12/2/07 8:05 PM  
Blogger Profpig ^@^ said...

Dawn - I'm really tired of all the times HDB keep telling us "no" but do not substantiate their answer. It's this thing about them that really makes me wonder why the authorities even bother letting people have any form of pets cause we are just at the mercy of their stupid rules!

The only reasons I can think of are that they can set up vet practices and pet shops and to charge tax to pet owners and shop owners and the vets! We should just have a zoo to let people go view the animals if we do not want anyone to attach feelings to animals! So, they will then save the trouble of people having animals in the house!

Whatever we say, they say NO. I'm tried of it. Reminds me of the times when I even have a decent conversation with any stats board or ministries.

Vegancat - So sad, why can't they just spare the dog. Since people around it love it, I really don't see the problem at all. It even takes care of the cats. Sigh.

12/2/07 11:00 PM  
Anonymous ej said...

Vegancat, wonderful story about the magic of kampong spirit saving a dog! and a happy ending too!

12/2/07 11:43 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Nice to see a community coming together to save the dog - and you can imagine it's unlikely they would have bonded (or possibly even met!) under different circumstances.

13/2/07 1:12 AM  

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