Residents of a luxury community in Dubai have received a notice warning that fines will be imposed on those found feeding stray cats in the neighbourhood.
Tenants and homeowners in Dubai’s Emirates Living, which includes Emirates Hills, The Springs, The Meadows and The Lakes, were told that leaving out food for stray animals was not permitted.
Emaar, the developer, said those caught breaking the rules would be fined Dh500 – as per Dubai Municipality guidelines – and could be referred to the authorities for further action.
In a notice to residents, the community management team said the warning was issued in the “interest of health and safety of Emirates Living”.
“In addition to having a negative effect on the community’s aesthetics and causing bad odour, the said practice is also associated with a number of other concerns,” the notice, which was dated September 8, read.
“Stray cats from adjacent areas are attracted to the food, which can result in noisy territorial disputes and fights.
“The leftover food attracts pests such as rodents and crawling/flying insects, counteracting the various pest control efforts carried out.”
Residents were told reports were received of stray animals showing aggressive behaviour towards children.
In the same email sent out to residents, a circular from Dubai Municipality was attached that stated “feeding of birds such as crows and pigeons and stray animals such as cats and dogs” was prohibited in the emirate.
The advisory said these animals create a hotbed for the breeding of pests and diseases, which in turn threatens public safety.
In 2018, the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment made pet abandonment a punishable offence.
Under the new legal amendments which target animals cruelty, the ministry said those found dumping pets would face legal consequences including fines or a jail sentence.
For years, the country has faced a growing problem with stray animals.
Their numbers are escalating rapidly, with an estimated 100,000 cats living on the streets in Abu Dhabi alone and tens of thousands more in Dubai.
While municipalities in Abu Dhabi and Dubai have set up trap, neuter and release programmes to control stray animal population growth, the issue persists.
Inside Abu Dhabi’s trap, neuter and release drive
Updated: September 9, 2020 11:39 AM
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