SINGAPORE - Two people were fined in court on Wednesday (Aug 23) for separate cases of animal cruelty and pet abandonment.
Li Xiaojing, 30, was fined $6,000 for taping a stray cat with masking tape.
The Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority (AVA) had been alerted to the case at Ubi Avenue 1 on Feb 1, and discovered Li's identity after investigations.
He claimed he had taped the feline to remove it from his residence, where it had allegedly urinated.
The cat was later found by a member of public, who took it to a veterinary clinic, where it had to be anaesthetised before the tape could be removed.
It did not sustain any physical injuries, and has since been successfully rehomed.
In another case, AVA was informed of a mixed breed cat abandoned in a pet carrier in Sumang Walk on Nov 23 last year.
Investigations revealed Noorfazanah Bte Abdul Salam, 32, to be the owner. She was fined $3,000.
She had taken the cat to the veterinarian the day before, but could not afford the expense, so she brought it back home and abandoned it later that day.
The feline was found by a member of public, and needed urgent veterinary attention, which it has since received.
It was cared by the SPCA until it was successfully rehomed.
AVA investigates all animal welfare/cruelty feedback, including pet abandonment, and will take the necessary enforcement action.
First-time offenders can be fined up to $10,000, or jailed for a year, or both, for pet abandonment.
Those found guilty for the first time of animal cruelty can be fined up to $15,000, or jailed for 18 months, or both.
The AVA said in a statement on Wednesday: "Safeguarding animal welfare is a shared social responsibility that needs the cooperation of all stakeholders, including the public. While AVA continues to ensure that the necessary enforcement action is taken and to raise awareness on animal welfare, members of the public can play their part by being vigilant."
It urged people to report any such cases via its 24-hour hotline at 1800-476-1600 or through its website.
It added that photos and videos would help with investigations, and that all information would be strictly confidential.