Moo-ving people toward compassionate living
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Originally Posted: 8 April 2009
California Spay/Neuter Bill Needs Your Voice Now
The first SB 250 (The Pet Responsibility Act) vote in the Senate is April 15th. In order to be counted in the committee's analysis, ALL LETTERS MUST BE SENT BY 5:00 PM WEDNESDAY, APRIL 8th.
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Each year, over $250 million dollars is spent housing and euthanizing homeless dogs and cats in California1. Approximately 1 million dogs and cats enter California’s shelters each year, and over half of them are euthanized (killed) simply because there are not enough homes2.
This enormous number of homeless pets actually means that every dog born in the state of California today has nearly a 1 in 4 chance of ultimately becoming homeless and dying in a shelter2. Two-thirds of the cats entering California shelters are euthanized2. And, the number of dogs and cats entering our shelters is currently on the rise2.
SB 250 provides a reasonable, fiscally responsible step towards reducing pet overpopulation in California. The bill simply requires that dogs be spayed or neutered unless their owner/guardian obtains an unaltered dog license when they license their animal.
SB 250 also requires that roaming cats be spayed and neutered by their owner/guardian.
SB 250 The Pet Responsibility Act, is:
Fair. Licensed dogs may be left unaltered if the owner/ guardian chooses. Owners cited for violating local or state laws may have their license revoked or be required to spay or neuter.
Fiscally responsible. SB 250 saves the state millions of dollars by reducing homeless pets.
Proven. Spay and neuter laws have been shown effective for over 10 years. In one community, the number of homeless animals was reduced by over 60% after a similar law was implemented4.
Forward thinking. Similar spay and neuter legislation is currently being introduced across the country, as legislators nationwide confront the high costs associated with pet overpopulation.
Provides due process. A full and fair hearing process is provided for matters related to citations.
Flexible. License costs, fines and implementation details are at the discretion of local jurisdictions.
Widely supported. A diverse coalition of elected officials, law enforcement agencies, city and county agencies, humane societies and SPCAs, veterinarians and veterinary hospitals, national animal welfare organizations, California rescue organizations, and thousands of individuals and organizations support spay and neuter legislation like SB 250.
The time has come for SB 250 The Pet Responsibility Act, a common sense, fiscally responsible method for reducing California’s tragic, expensive pet overpopulation crisis.
Sources: (1) Shelter cost estimates provided by Los Angeles Animals Services and California Animal Control Directors Association. (2) Population / percentages of animals incoming and exiting shelters, source: California Department of Public Health, Veterinary Public Health Section, “Rabies Control Activities Reporting by Local Health Jurisdiction (LHJ), California, 1995-2007, extrapolated to encompass incomplete data and private shelters. (3) From NEARLY ONE OUT OF FOUR DOGS IN CALIFORNIA IS ULTIMATELY EUTHANIZED IN OUR SHELTERS, a SCIL fact sheet based on figures from the US Census Bureau, American Pet Products Manufacturers Association and the California Department of Health Services. (4) Shelter intake and euthanasia numbers provided by Santa Cruz County Animal Services.
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