After reading the "Since You Asked" about roaming cats, it brought up a question. Is it legal to trap and kill "stray" cats? We have lost many cats over the years, and think a neighbor might be disposing of them. Thanks.

After reading the "Since You Asked" about roaming cats, it brought up a question. Is it legal to trap and kill "stray" cats? We have lost many cats over the years, and think a neighbor might be disposing of them. Thanks.

— L.J.M.

The trapping part is legal, as long as one is trapping on their own property. The killing part is not legal. In Jackson County, you can trap cats that are on your property in a live trap and take them to the animal care and control center. Then if someone realizes their cat is missing they can go to the shelter and pay the daily fee to reclaim it, which is $5 bail and $8 for each night.

Some people do this and the county encourages it because it helps get strays off the street. Among other things, the shelter staff checks out the cat and decides if it's adoptable or not. If cats are too aggressive or have serious health problems, staff may deem them unadoptable, and at that time consider euthanization.

People who are missing a cat should contact the shelter right away. The shelter encourages people to put collars and phone numbers on their cats and/or implant chips, which the shelter checks when an animal is brought in. They also recommend keeping cats indoors.

Consider your neighbor's sensibilities. Cats are notorius for using foreign flower beds as latrines and others' backyards as a place to howl the night away and fight.

If your neighbor is approachable, consider asking something non-accusatory, like if your cats have been bothersome. Some people, with good reason, don't want cats on their property. Also, consider asking your veterinarian for advice, since you've lost many cats over the years.