YOUR neighbour has a tom-cat that is making your life a misery. You own two neutered cats and their lives are being terrorised by Timmy, the tom. He comes through the cat- door, or any open window, sprays around the house, eats the cats' food, and leaves.

You have considered special collars that would mean only your cats could get through the door, but sometimes you like to leave the kitchen window open and, anyway, Timmy also fights your cats in their own garden. One of your cats nearly got throttled with a flea-collar when it was young and is phobic about wearing one.

The cats are now terrified of going out, sometimes peeing in the house. You have not broached the topic with your neighbour, but you know he has strong views on neutering - which would, you feel, solve the problem. Should you sneak Timmy away in the night and have him operated on secretly? Is there another way? Advice from animal- lovers, please.