Councils urged to scan cats after road accidents
A pet owner is campaigning for a change in the law so that when cats are killed in road accidents, local councils must scan for a microchip and inform the owners.
Helena Abrahams said that as the situation currently stands, cats killed on the road are often thrown into landfill without the owner's knowledge.
Her online petition has collected more than 55,000 signatures and needs to reach 100,000 by April for the issue to be debated in the House of Commons.
"Thousands of cats are just disposed of every year without being scanned for a chip after being involved in RTAs," Abrahams explained on the petition. "Owners search for months and years and never get closure. Scanning takes two minutes. Cats are a part of a family and deserve to be returned home, not thrown into landfill."
If the law is changed, all cats found in the road would have to be scanned and returned to their owners.
"A scanner is not expensive and all councils need providing with one and need to use it," Abrahams argued.
Responding to the petition, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said: "It is already good practice for local authorities and Highways England to scan any cat or dog found on our streets so that the owner can be informed."
The Department noted that after road traffic accidents, "some local authorities do endeavour to identify the owners if the pet has a collar or microchip and we encourage others to adopt the same practice."
Abrahams' campaign, Gizmo's Legacy, is named after her own cat who was killed by a car and then disposed of without her knowledge.
She told Metro.co.uk: "Thousands of cats are being dumped in landfill every year just because local councils cannot be bothered to scan their bodies. They will only listen is if there is a change in the law.
"Councils say that cats are scanned at the roadside but we know that is not true so we need a law passed so cat owners are not put through the heartbreak of not knowing where their pet has ended up."
If you want to add your voice to the campaign, please click here to sign the petition.