Arnold the Pet Terminator
Boy oh boy, did the Guvernator pick the wrong fight to plug what equates to about 0.07% of California's projected budget deficit.
Gov. Arnold is pushing to repeal a 1998 law that requires animal shelters to hold stray pets for at least six days. The main effect of this law would be less time for families with lost pets to find their pets, and for rescue groups to pull adoptable pets out of the shelters and place them into foster homes until a permanent home can be found. The repeal of the law would also eliminate the requirement for for shelters to contact pet owners if the contact information can be found on a microchip scanner, and for animal abusers to pay for the vet bills on the pets that they abuse.
I don't know about any of you, but our dog is treated like a member of the family. He got his tags and he's microchipped, and we installed a doggie door in the side of the house so he can access both the house and the yard during the day. We also built an "escape resistant" dog run in the side yard since his adoption papers indicated in big bold letters that the little monster is an ESCAPE ARTIST. We know first hand that he's very inventive when it comes to finding new ways to get out (fortunately, he hasn't wandered beyond the front yard, but who knows what he'd do if he saw a cat or a squirrel down the street), so anything that shortens the mandatory holding period at animal shelters is pretty worrisome to us.
We know that the shelters closest to where we live have microchip scanners. What if they could obtain our contact info through that scan, but never bother to contact us because they are no longer required to? With the much shorter holding requirement, a pet can be put down with less than a day for owners to try and track their stray pets down in those shelters that have no weekend or evening hours (this is pretty much how the City of L.A. shelters operate; their limited hours of operation and adoption procedures make it impossible to adopt a pet or find a stray without taking a day or two off from work, and they put down 34,000 animals last year).
Arnie has been very popular thus far as Guv, and shown a surprising capacity to compromise and talk to both sides on otherwise volatile issues. I don't see any benefit to taking on pet owners! I mean, my wife is about as non-political and moderate (i.e. a swing voter) as you can get, yet she just forwarded an e-mail to me about this and she's telling me to circulate it to everybody we know! She could care less about following the day-to-day goings with politics and Washington scandals, but THIS is something that's got her completely up in arms. If my wife is this riled up, it can't be a good thing for Arnie to keep pushing this issue.
Didn't know anything about it until now but I doubt it's going to have as big an effect you propose, Wooch. We got our dog from the shelter too (big advocate of this btw) and everyone that works there is a devoted animal lover that doesn't need a law telling them to try everything possible to return the pet to their owner. Our dog is 'chipped and I doubt seriously that the folks at the shelter wouldn't try to scan her regardless of whether or not some law says they have to. Thankfully, she's a homebody so I'm too worried. I had a dog like yours once, he's on a ranch now and can run 'till his heart's content.
I think it really depends on the locality. The Bay Area where I live is very much in the low-kill category when it comes to pets. We've had our dog scanned by the local shelter, and don't think the staff there would neglect to contact us if he ever winds up there. So long as our dog doesn't wander too far off, we're not worried that he'd get put to sleep when the clock strikes on the sixth day. Dogs though can wander quite a ways if given a chance, and I don't know anything about how other jurisdictions operate.
Originally Posted by topspeed
Unfortunately, shelters in other areas have very high kill rates. For example, L.A. City and Sacramento are notorious for keeping animals only so long as they're obligated to, and putting them to sleep at the first opportunity. With the L.A. City shelters, most of them have no evening or weekend hours. Under the old rules (which we would revert back to if the Guv has his way), the mandatory holding period was 72 hours, and if a dog was taken in Friday afternoon, the shelter was only obligated to keep them until Monday afternoon, regardless of operating hours. If the shelter is closed over the weekend, that means that the owner only had Monday morning and early-afternoon to find their pet at the shelter before they could get put to sleep. It's all too easy for an owner and a pet to miss one another at the larger shelters the first time the owner comes looking for their pet. At least a six day holding period allows owners to get a second chance to locate their stray pet.
Also, a few years ago, a couple of rural county shelters (I don't remember if they were in California) got caught selling dogs to research labs right after the mandatory holding periods ran out, even though they still had room for more dogs. I think those types of incidents were one of the reasons why the requirement to notify owners of microchipped dogs was put into law, because I think some of the dogs that wound up at a lab had been microchipped and the owners not notified.
Our dog's also a homebody for the most part, but he has his hyper/curious moments, and if he picks up a cat or squirrel scent, it's off to the races! Fortunately, our dog run fencing is buried two feet under with the top part of the fencing angled inward. Our dog was fostered by a rescue group that bailed him out of a Ventura County shelter not too long before his put to sleep date came up. He's great company, and we still scratch our heads that someone actually turned him in at a shelter where he would have been the first to take the needle once space ran out (owner relinquished dogs still have a shorter mandatory hold than strays).
Well, good news! The Guv decided to back off. He admitted he made the mistake when his budget got drafted, and he's reinstated the longer waiting period. Amazing how much of a stink got created so quickly over this issue. Here's a pic of some constituents that approve of Arnie's reversal. They can't vote for him, but they're happy regardless.
Yeah, that was kind of a bone headed move.
But, I gotta give him credit for admitting he stepped in doggie doo doo and did a quick turnaround. Somethings soundgoodat firat, but upon more reflection don't seem so good.
Now, if only our governer would show some good sense. His appointments have all turned out bad for one reason or another.
Users Browsing this Thread
There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)
By Torech Ungol in forum Home Theater/Video
Last Post: 03-12-2004, 12:05 PM
By John Beresford in forum Favorite Films
Last Post: 12-16-2003, 07:50 AM
By This Guy in forum Favorite Films
Last Post: 11-24-2003, 07:32 AM