Caging Hemingway's Cats?
Are these people nuts??
The caretakers of Ernest Hemingway's Key West home want a federal judge to intervene in their dispute with the U.S. Department of Agriculture over the six-toed cats that roam the property.
More than 50 descendants of a multi-toed cat the novelist received as a gift in 1935 wander the grounds of the home, where Hemingway lived for more than 10 years and wrote "A Farewell to Arms" and "To Have and Have Not."
The Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum disputes the USDA's claim that it is an "exhibitor" of cats and needs to have a USDA Animal Welfare License, according to a complaint filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Miami.
Agency inspectors who have repeatedly visited the property since October 2003 have never indicated any concerns about the welfare of the cats.
But they have said a 6-foot-high, brick-and-mortar fence Hemingway built around the property in 1937 did not sufficiently contain the 53 cats, which should be caged, according to the complaint.
Caging the cats, some of which are 19 years old or older, would traumatize them, and the home's designation as a National Historic Site prohibits extending the height of the fence, the complaint said.