Environmentalist Gareth Morgan has offered to donate $5
to the SPCA for every homeless cat they put down.
Dr Morgan and SPCA executive president Bob Kerridge have been
locked in a war of words after the businessman launched the
"Cats to Go"campaign last week, labelling cats as
"natural-born killers"and calling for local governments to
require registration and micro-chipping of cats, and to
eradicate unregistered cats.
In a New Zealand Herald opinion piece, Mr Kerridge called for
Dr Morgan to "rethink your tactics and join us to bring about
a positive solution by encouraging responsible cat
"Why not put your money where your busy mouth is and support
us by assisting with the funding of desexing and
micro-chipping of every domestic cat in the country. That
will make a positive difference, and will free up SPCA
funding to add to our bird rescue activities," Mr Kerridge
"If you don't want to do that, and you continue on your
ridiculous resolve to be rid of all cats, I can only repeat
what I have already said: 'Butt out of our lives, and don't
deprive us of the beautiful relationship that a cat can
provide, individually, and in our families'."
Dr Morgan responded to Mr Kerridge on Campbell Live last
"Yesterday Bob Kerridge had the audacity to write in the New
Zealand Herald to lay down a challenge to me to put my money
where my mouth is and give the SPCA some money.
"I'll do that, Bob. I'll do it as long as you stop being the
society to protect cats and start becoming the SPCA as we all
think you are.
"Here's the condition: You will not release one more cat into
the wild in New Zealand. You will only release cats to
registered owners who will chip them. If you do that, then
for every cat that is turned into an authorised pound and
doesn't satisfy those conditions, so nobody claims (it), and
is euthanised, I will give $5 to the SPCA."
Dr Morgan accused the SPCA of "single-handedly destroying our
"These people are releasing cats back into the wild - it's
He told Campbell Live his campaign had nothing to do with
those cats confined to their owners' homes, and rejected that
he ever said people should not be able to replace their pet
cats when they die.
"What I'm saying is keep your cat confined and if you can't
keep your cat confined, then yes, please make this your last
"Don't let your cat wander off your section - that's my
Dr Morgan suggested people tired of their neighbours' cats
walking across their property should cage-trap them and take
them to their local council, to prompt local authorities to
deal with the issue of wandering cats.
"I'm coming at this from the conservation angle, that the
biggest asset this country has, by a country mile, is its
natural capital, and I'm about monetising that so I can boost
the incomes and jobs in New Zealand. This is just one part of