An animal advocate says the Invercargill City Council's chief executive is doing the right thing in backing away from his comments on a cat-trap controversy.
Richard King originally suggested neighbours of a woman with 37 cats could pick up traps from the council and there would be no questions asked about what happened to the animals.
His comments sparked a petition that got more than 19,000 signatures.
Mia Nelson, who presented the petition, says it's a good decision for Mr King to apologise publicly and let people know they will get into trouble if they use the traps to catch the cats for slaughter.
Ms Nelson says she wouldn't be surprised if cats were hurt during the uproar.