Owner of cat that attacked man gets pet back


HOUSTON – The owner of a cat who a neighbor says attacked him while he was walking his dog was able to get her cat back Thursday afternoon after it was cleared of rabies, the city tells Local 2.

The owner was fined $200 for having her cat loose and for having an unregistered animal. She also paid $96 to cover the city's costs of the quarantine and $120 for a city license, impound fee, microchip and vet services.

A man says a neighborhood cat attacked him Aug. 25 leaving several inches-long scratch marks and two bite marks as he was walking his dogs about 8:30 a.m. in The Heights near the corner of North Sabine Street and Sage Street.

Local 2 reporter Jace Larson. "I tried to get in the way to try and protect the dogs and the cat latched on to my leg and scratched."

David said he did not provoke the cat, which came from a house.

State law says an animal that breaks a person's skin or otherwise may have exposed a person to rabies must be quarantined for 240 hours from the date of the exposure.

The city and state have dangerous dog ordinances that can, in rare cases, allow the city to euthanize a dangerous dog. There is no such rule that applies to cats.

A dangerous dog ordinance allows the city to euthanize a dog that has bitten a person, after the dog's owner has gone through a city hearing and been given the opportunity to appeal the decision to euthanize the animal.

Another neighbor said a cat came from the same Houston address and chased her and her dog last summer.

"We were walking across the street and we saw this cat and it just launched off the porch and came running at us," Keri Smith said. "He probably chased us about a half a block."

The cat's owner said the cat has been known to run after dogs but had never harmed a person.