No law on maximum number of cats to own


POSTED: Thursday, October 23, 2008

Question: Our neighbor in Ewa Beach has a couple of dozen cats, and not all of them seem really healthy. Isn't there some kind of law that limits how many pets you can have?

Answer: There is a Honolulu County law that limits dog ownership to no more than 10. For cats there is no definitive limit. However, more important than “;how many?”; is quality of care. In years past the Hawaiian Humane Society has met many pet owners who do have a large number of animals but care for them all well.

The law that matters most is Hawaii's animal cruelty and basic sustenance laws, which outline the minimum standard of care required and provides for prosecution of those who will not provide the minimum.

If you suspect your neighbors animals are not being well provided for, you can make a confidential call to the Humane Society to ensure an investigator looks into the situation. Investigators are educators first and enforcers second.

They do everything possible to guide owners on what to do to ensure a healthy and happy life for pets.

Q: What do cats need to be healthy and happy?

A: What makes a responsible pet owner is someone who can easily provide for the welfare of all the animals he or she chooses to have.

That includes the basics: quality food, fresh water, shelter, as well as regular veterinarian care and preventive maintenance against fleas and hairballs, grooming, socialization, exercise and plenty of playtime. Since the Humane Society recommends that all cats should be at home, your size and type of dwelling largely determines what is a comfortable number. However, cats are often better in pairs than alone.