The outrage: man convicted for trapping cat on his own property


supplied, via Stuff

A Palmerston North man convicted of capturing a pet cat in a leg trap said he was trying to prevent it from hunting birds on his property.

Paul Parsons was convicted in the Palmerston North District Court on Wednesday on a charge of using a prohibited trap for the purpose of capturing an animal.

He was fined $500 and ordered to pay $130 in court costs and a $250 contribution to legal costs.

A statement from the SPCA said that when Parson was interviewed he admitted setting the trap for the purpose of capturing the cat to prevent it from hunting birds on his property.

SPCA NZ chief executive Ric Odom said the actions were “clearly completely unacceptable and irresponsible”.

“The SPCA wants this conviction to send a clear message to anyone considering setting leg hold traps – and the message is: don’t do it. It is illegal to set leg hold traps near dwellings and size one-and-a-half long-spring leg hold traps are themselves illegal.”

The Animal Welfare Order 2007 states that no leg hold traps can be used within 150 metres of a dwelling without the express permission of the occupier, or in any area where there is a probable risk of catching a companion animal.

“What if a small child had caught their hand or foot in the trap?” Odom said.

“Leg hold traps have absolutely no place in urban areas. No one should be setting these cruel traps anywhere near houses or where domestic pets may be caught in them.”

The SPCA statement said an adult, black, domestic, short-haired cat was found by its owner caught in a serrated edge, size one-and-a-half, long-spring, leg hold trap on the defendant’s property in Palmerston North on October 11, 2015.

The trap was secured to the base of a tree and the cat’s right foreleg was caught in it.

The Animal Welfare Order 2007 has prohibited the use of size one-and-a-half long-spring, leg hold traps since January 1, 2009.

The owner struggled to free the cat from the trap, the SPCA said.

The defendant refused to assist initially, but after a heated altercation, and input from his wife, he reluctantly agreed,” the SPCA said.

A veterinary examination revealed that the cat had sustained two fractures in its paw. The paw was swollen and had puncture wounds on both sides.

The SPCA said the veterinarian commented that there would have been significant pain and fear induced by the trapping.

The trap was seized during the execution of a search warrant at the defendant’s home on October 13, 2015.

The man needs a medal.  I’ve already killed 4 cats this year.  The only problem was that he used a trapping method that has been illegal for some time.

There are other ways to trap cats, humanely.  And then you can dispatch them, humanely.

Next time, he should use a Timms trap.   He will have to cut away some of the plastic around the opening to make sure cats put their heads in properly.

That way there won’t be any problems of living cats to tell their story.


– Stuff

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.