More tolerance needed in Singapore

My wife is an unofficial volunteer assisting with the responsible feeding and sterilisation of stray cats.

As a regular volunteer, she is sometimes called upon by other volunteers to assist in attending to complaints by members of the public on the nuisance caused by strays.

While some of the complaints warrant action, for example, irresponsible feeding resulting in rotting leftover food, some are really unbelievably frivolous.

It saddens me to know that there are people who will write to the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) or town councils to complain of the mere presence of cats in their estates. Have we become such selfish beings that we cannot tolerate other living creatures in our midst?

AVA and town councils should exercise discretion when handling such issues. Sometimes, it is the complainant who needs to be counselled by the authorities on tolerance.

A person who cannot tolerate the presence of harmless animals is likely to be unable to exercise tolerance towards other humans who are different from him.

A famous quote bears repeating here: The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.

Tan Chwee Seng