Local News


Family's cats trapped and taken by coalition

Posted at 10:45 PM, Jan 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-06 09:43:55-05

Neighborhood pets disappearing! 

It's a case of catnapping pitting neighbor against neighbor and casting a shadow over a community nonprofit.

"Shh.  It's OK," says cat owner Anastasia, comforting her upset orange tabby.

Casper is still recovering from an experience his owner calls a catnapping.

"It's just all shady and it's all wrong!"

Anastasia's family lives in a Spring Valley neighborhood with their three cats, which they allow outside. 

Two of them, Casper and Nightshade, recently went missing for days. She says they came back dirty, malnourished and injured.

"And they tried to tell me, well, his leg probably got caught in a trap," said Anastasia after one cat came back limping.

The family learned their pets had been trapped by C5 -- the Community Cat Coalition of Clark County. 

Their mission is to trap and neuter feral cats, then return them to local colonies.

But Casper and Nightshade are not feral.  Making it even more of wonder why her neighbor called C5 to have the pets trapped.

We went to the neighbor's house and knocked on his door. The man we know only as Toby has a feral cat colony on his property. 

After going inside without a word, he eventually comes back out but denies calling C5 to have the cats trapped.

He finally goes back in for good.  And we go to C5 President Keith Williams, who confirms Toby is the one who called them in.

Williams says they work hard to avoid trapping people's pets. 

But at the time they took Casper and Nightshade, there was a little known law in place that required cats to be on leashes if they were outside.

That law just changed on Dec. 1.  Cats are now allowed to roam free. 

Williams acknowledges the cats had collars, but no I.D. tags or microchips.  And, he says neither was neutered.

Casper and Nightshade's records show both were neutered years ago.

Both cats came back from C5 with the tips of their right ears cut off -- a sign that a cat has been sterilized. 

But Williams blames the misinformation on a paperwork mix-up at their vet clinic. And, he adds, what happened here is unusual.

"It's vastly more likely to be run over by a car, taken to the shelter and euthanized, eaten by a coyote, than it is to end up in one of our traps."

Anastasia cradles Casper, whispering, "You're gonna be OK." 

She's now keeping a much closer eye on her feline friends.