No More Mutts

I talked a little about dogs in our society before, but now the issue has to be discussed because of another law that might be passed in California. In case you have not heard, mandatory neutering might be instituted in California following the great success of an ordinance in Santa Cruz.

The pet world is a complicated one, and unless you have loved a pet it is hard to express the feelings stirred by the fur balls we share our lives with. We own this animals, but more than property they are part of our lives. My Mom used my dog to illustrate the level of compassion I had inside since I was willing to sleep on the floor when I brought him home for two nights. I don`t think I have ever slept on the floor again but I did not mind doing it to make the puppy feel safe.

My first thought about the law is that is going to punish the wrong people. The second one was that less and less pets are going to be registered for fear of the $500 fine if you fail to fix your pet before they are six months. They are however exempting register breeders, but mutts for the most part don`t have a place in the new dog society.

I have been wanting to talk about Michael Vick story and his involvement with dog fighting. He ended up not being indicted and while I know little about that horrible world, I had hoped that someone turned the story into something more positive. Would a law like this really stop the dog fighting industry that seems to be growing every year?

The next group that I would like to see stopped is puppy mills. They are the “bastages” that abuse dogs just to turn a profit. Maybe not as horrible as dog fighting, but pretty close on how they think of animals as just objects that are there for our amusement. I seriously doubt that puppy mills would be stopped by any law since they are already breaking laws.

The last group I mentioned is the cat lady that keeps on taking in cats until there is a ridiculous amount of them inside her place. The animals end up living in a environment that does not provide them with much of a life anyway.

So who is this going to target then? surely not responsible owners that already know the benefits of neutering. Then again, why would a responsible owner care if they already do it?

How is this going to be enforced? does this mean that big brother now also cares about what animals we have?

I think any time that the government steps in to help us is taking away from personal responsibility. We should do the right thing because of our morals and not because there is a rule, law or a fine waiting for us. I think mutts are some of the coolest dogs out there, but I think this law would do nothing but supposedly lower the percentage of animals that have to be disposed of because of irresponsible breeding. I am not sure how you guys feel about pets, I personally feel that the this law is more about revenue than really doing much for animals themselves.

5 comments on “No More Mutts

  1. I agree with you in opposition to the law. You also raise a number of good points about other evildoers in the pet world. I think the problem with puppy mills is that they are legally difficult to distinguish from honest breeders even though most people probably have a similar idea of the distinction. Then again, I’m a mutt-lover and don’t have much love for breeders, either (though I don’t think that they should be shut down). The biggest problem with crimes against animals is that most of the witnesses can’t testify.

    I guess if I were to do anything to encourage the spaying or neutering of animals, it would be that people that don’t spay or neuter their pets have to pay for some other low-income person to have their pet spayed or neutered (or, more likely, have the money put into a fund for clinics that do that sort of thing for free. If someone consciously doesn’t want to get their pet spayed of neutered I think they should have that right, but I think that spaying and neutering ought to be the path of least resistence (or cost) to prevent people from declining to spay or neuter their animal out of simple inertia.

  2. Third time’s the charm for this comment:

    Mandatory fixing of pets has been in place in CA for years. When we adopted our cat and dog from different shelters over the last 4 years, the shelter gave us three choices, in regards to fixing the pets:

    1) Most animals were already fixed by the shelter.
    2) The few that weren’t were scheduled to be fixed before they would be considered “ready for adoption”
    3) They would make you sign a waiver, stating that you would fix the animal within, typically, 60 days, and you had to send the shelter a receipt/vet’s note stating that the fixing procedure was completed.

    We were told, that all adoptions that ended in choice #3 were tentative until they received that note.

    I do think i should read up on the proposed law, though. Many times the intentions are good, but the implementation and punishment of violators are to one extreme or another.

  3. Daniel,

    You are right, most pets that are adopted are neutered at the time of adoption or required to do so later. This law however is for ALL pets, not just the ones you adopt at a shelter.

  4. I don’t agree with this at all, especially since most of wild/stray pets that are at-fault for continuing to breed wild/stray pets will still not be spayed or neutered without having an owner. I think it’s a pet owner’s obligation to eventually neuter their animal to reduce their chances for cancer, but not by law.

  5. FYI, I heard on the radio the other day that this law had been withdrawn from the California Assembly, not to be addressed during this legislative year. The state government still shows the bill as active (AB 1634), having squeaked through the Assembly by three votes and now under consideration by the Senate.

    As for who it applies to, Logtar is correct: it’s for everybody with a handful of exceptions, such as folks breeding show animals, service animals, guide animals, and farm animals (on their own farms). Exceptions for the health of the animal are also available, and fees are to be set by local authorities, so they could vary rather wildly.

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