UPDATE – Feb. 27, 2023 

Due to the voices of Utah advocates against this bill, it failed in the Utah House by a vote of 58 Yeas, 58 Nays and 3 absent or not voting. If you took action to protect community cats in Utah with us, thank you!

Original message:

This week, Alley Cat Allies submitted testimony opposing a Utah state bill that would restrict community cat caregivers to not feed cats outside of daylight hours. This measure would not only be inappropriate and injurious to caregivers, who are good Samaritans improving their community, it would also irreparably damage Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) efforts to manage community cat populations in the state.

Read our letter of testimony against this dangerous bill, HB 505, below.

If you live in Utah, join us and tell your legislators to vote NO.


February 23, 2023

Chair Walt Brooks

House Committee on Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment

Utah State Legislature

350 N. State, Suite 350

Salt Lake City, UT, 84114


Re: OPPOSE HB 505 (Ivory) – Feral Cat Amendments

Dear Chair Brooks and Members of the Committee:

On behalf of Alley Cat Allies and our thousands of supporters in Utah, I am writing in opposition to HB 505, Feral Cat Amendments, and I ask you to vote against the bill. If enacted into law as it is currently written, this bill will create a barrier to the only humane and effective program that is saving cats’ lives and saving taxpayers’ money statewide: Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR).

Alley Cat Allies is the leading advocacy organization dedicated to protecting and improving the lives of all cats. We have promoted evidence-based and compassionate policies for cats since our founding in 1990, and we regularly work with lawmakers, shelters, and the public to change attitudes and advance lifesaving laws and policies that best serve the interests of cats.

Today, your constituents are volunteering their time and resources to carry out a solution for your communities and the cats of Utah. Through TNR, community cats—unowned cats who live outdoors—are humanely trapped, spayed or neutered, vaccinated, eartipped for identification, and returned to their outdoor homes. TNR is evidence-based, sound public policy that benefits cats and the people of the community. Without TNR, populations of cats continue to breed unchecked. Many of these community cats are impounded and then killed in shelters at the expense of the taxpayer because they are not socialized to people and therefore not adoptable into homes.

In HB 505, the proposed restriction under 11-46-303, reads as follows:

(5) A community cat caretaker or a sponsor may only feed community cats during daylight hours.

This requirement will inhibit—not promote—TNR in Utah, and therefore will be detrimental to the people and cats of the state.

Feeding community cats is an important element to ensure the success of TNR. When food is later withheld, it ensures that cats are hungry enough to go into traps. Since caregivers for these community cats are volunteers, they must feed the cats when they are not working, which is often outside of daylight hours, especially in the short days of winter.

TNR is the mainstream approach to community cats and is unquestionably the present and future of animal control and animal sheltering in the United States. We are a nation of compassionate people who, when given a choice, consistently favor laws and policies that do not bring harm or death to cats. Please do not create a barrier to TNR that will impede the continuation and expansion of this lifesaving work.

We urge you to vote against HB 505 on behalf of your constituents, our supporters, and Utah’s community cats. Thank you for opposing this bill.


Calley Gerber

Alley Cat Allies