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      Sylvania signs law banning the feeding of stray cats

      A growing number of felines in the city of Sylvania has prompted a ban on feeding stray cats.

      Sylvania city leaders unanimously approved an ordinance on Monday making it against the law to feed feral cats.

      Advocates have said the feeding ban could lead to more nuisance complaints as stray cats get into garbage cans and hunt birds, rabbits, squirrels, and other wildlife.

      The city tried a spay-neuter program for stray cats last fall, but residents say the problem persisted because people have continued to feed the animals.

      "The legislation passed by Sylvania City Council on Monday provides an additional enforcement option for use in extreme and egregious situations where the feeding of feral cats is creating unsanitary conditions that are a menace to the health of Sylvania residents," the city's law director, Leslie Brinning, said via email. "The City will continue to seek the assistance of animal welfare organizations to assist in a Trap, Neuter and Release (â??TNRâ??) Program in the City of Sylvania. It is the Cityâ??s goal that this two-pronged approach will enable the City to more proactively address its increasing feral cat population."

      The law took effect on Tuesday.

      (The Associated Press contributed to this story.)