After attacks on native wildlife, the Sydney area is putting its cats on a leash: Under a new rule, they’ll have to be inside from dusk to dawn, Reuters reports. The decision came after a deputy mayor’s son saved a parent and baby possum from a cat. In the past year, some 564 cat attacks on possums have been reported. “It's a small thing to ask people to keep their cats indoors if it means protecting our native wildlife,” says the suburban Sydney official.
“After all, they were here first, we've introduced domestic pets, so we have a responsibility to control them.” Local officials will send out pamphlets requesting that cat owners keep their cats inside at night, keep an eye on them in daytime, and stick a pair of bells on their collars. So dogs get a free pass? “Dogs will do terrible damage to a possum, but they don't get them quite as often because they don't climb trees,” says the deputy mayor.