Orlando residents say feral cats possibly poisoned



ORLANDO, Fla. - Residents in the Colonialtown area of Orlando are outraged after they said they found cats and wildlife dead that was apparently poisoned.

Signs have been posted in the neighborhood warning people that poisoning cats is against the law. The area is known for dozens of stray cats.

"I would more than likely think that people are starting to take matters into their own hands and they're putting out stuff to reduce the population," resident Natasha McIntosh said.

Residents said they have found cats and wildlife dead in recent weeks and it's believed the animals were poisoned. The deaths have prompted residents to post the signs around Shine Avenue and Concord Street. Orlando police said officers responded two weeks ago after it was reported that three cats may have been poisoned.

"They have to understand that the cats also have a right to live," McIntosh said. "If it's intentional poisoning or rat poisoning, it's still wrong."

Orange County Animal Services released a statement regarding the feral cat deaths:

"It is imperative if anyone witnesses mistreatment of animals to report it immediately. Any inhumane treatment of pets, including poisoning, needs to be reported to Animal Services. Cruelty reports can be made by calling 407-836-3111 or 1-800-423-TIPS.

For any neighborhoods struggling with feral cats, we recommend reaching out to our partners at CARE Feline TNR. This organization helps trap feral cats, our clinic sterilizes the pets, and then they are returned by CARE to their original location or relocated. CARE can be reached by calling 407-522-2617.

Another option is to rent a trap from our agency. Either the citizen or an Animal Services officer then brings the cat back to our shelter. These cats are not returned to their original location."

Authorities said the investigation is ongoing and anyone with information is asked to contact the Orlando Police Department.