BETHESDA, Md., USA  Alley Cat Allies denounced the classification of cats as an invasive species by the Polish Academy of Sciences Institute of Nature Conservation this year. Here is our response to this cruel, inaccurate, and dangerous situation:

Make no mistake, labeling cats as invasive is a preferred first step in a broader strategy of killing them in huge numbers through ghastly cat hunts and poisonings, as Australia, New Zealand and other countries are doing. But this idea of mass killing cats will never be accepted by the compassionate society in which we live. The idea that we must kill one species to save another is both scientifically and morally flawed. It will never be effective, justified, or sound policy to kill cats.

Leading biologists, climate scientists and environmental watchdogs agree that climate change, habitat destruction and development are the leading causes of species loss. It is entirely improper to place the blame on cats for problems we have caused.

Furthermore, it is perfectly normal for cats to live outside. Cats have lived alongside us for thousands of years, only coming indoors with us in the last century after the invention of kitty litter. There is no future in which people can exist without cats they are here to stay. The only path forward is through humane, nonlethal programs such as Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), the scientifically proven approach to effectively and humanely address community cat populations.