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Cat deaths on roads should be treated the same as dogs ministers argue


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 Running over cats should be treated the same as hitting dogs, with mandatory microchip screening for all deceased cats found on the roadside, according to a group of ministers.

The London Assembly have unanimously passed a motion, pledging to ask the city’s mayor Sadiq Khan to lobby the government to change the law.

Under the Road Traffic Act 1988 motorists are required to stop and report any incident they have involving horses, cattle, donkeys, sheep, pigs, goats or dogs, but cats are not included in this - something The London Assembly wants to see changed.

Feline charity CatsMatter also want to see a change in law and in January the charity's co-founder met Labour MP Sue Hayman, Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and spoke to her about why they are campaigning for a change in legislation.

CatsMatter say their goal “is to challenge UK law surrounding cat's welfare on our roads, because all cats matter” and they believe, “when drivers fail to do the right thing, local councils should do everything possible to help ensure that owners are notified of their cat’s untimely death.”

Microchips of dead cats need to be checked with mandatory screening for all deceased cats found on the roadside, the Assembly say, citing the “distress” cat owners experience when their pets go missing and they are not informed of an incident as a major reason.

Sian Berry, Green London Assembly member who proposed the motion, said: “The problem highlighted in this motion is something I wasn’t aware of until I was told about CatsMatter’s campaign.

“When I had the exact experience of my cat going missing and just not knowing where he was. I assumed the microchip would mean I would find out.

“But no. Luckily my cat came back soaking wet after three nights who knows where, but there are so many pet owners who never know. And that’s grim when so many of them have done the right thing and got a microchip. The problem is cats are not equal to dogs in the way the government and local authorities treat them.”

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