SOUTH CONNELLSVILLE (KDKA) — It’s one problem after another for one Fayette County community where the stray cat population has led to concerns about coyotes.

South Connellsville not a big place, but its sure has a lot of cats.

“Out at the end of our borough, on McCormick Avenue, there seems to be a lot out there,” says Karen Holbrook, of the South Connellsville Borough Council. “There are different areas where cats are more of a problem than others.”

There’s been a significant increase in the number of cats, feral or otherwise. The reason, according to Holbrook, is pretty simple.

“We need to have responsible pet owners,” she says. “Someone will get a pet, won’t get it spayed or neutered, and then when they get tired of it, they let it outside to fend for itself.”

With cat numbers up, some unwanted guests are coming into the area from the other side of the wood line.

“We have coyotes in the area, and some people think that will take care of the cat problem,” says Holbrook.

Coyotes are known to attack felines along with small dogs.

The coyote-cat combo means the woodland dogs are getting closer to humans, and that’s a concern. But there’s only so much that can be done.

“I don’t know if we can stop that completely because we live close to the woods. I think we’re going to have animals in our yards,” Holbrook says.

Right now, South Connellsville has an animal control agency, but it’s not a no-kill shelter and some people there want to see that change.

But the key to this problem appears to be responsible pet ownership.

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