As previously reported, the Dallas City Council will consider changes to its animal ordinances at its Wednesday, June 27, meeting. The American Kennel Club (AKC) expressed concerns with the proposal, and encouraged residents and other grassroots contacts to also share their concerns with the Dallas City Council. Late yesterday, stakeholders received feedback from Council staff about the legislative intent of the proposal, which was subsequently provided to AKC. The AKC thanks Dallas Councilmembers, their staff, and Animal Services Director Ed Jamison for their responsiveness to constituents’ concerns. However, AKC remains concerned with the impact of the proposed changes.
- Currently, 7-2.6 of Dallas’ animal ordinances provides what is required of an owner to redeem their animal from a city animal shelter. It requires the owner to provide proof of ownership and to pay certain fees in exchange for services. One of the changes under consideration tomorrow seeks to add to those requirements that the fees are, “for services rendered before redemption”.
- Under the list of required fees is a $60 for sterilization. The current law provides the following exceptions to paying the sterilization fee, including if: (E) the animal is a competition cat or competition dog, (F) the animal is a service animal, or (G) the owner of the animal has, or obtains at the time of redemption, a valid intact animal permit. The proposed changes remove those exceptions to the fee for service requirements.
As currently written, these changes can mean that:
- Owners who will seek to redeem their animal from a city shelter must, in addition to any other required fees, pay $60 for sterilization, no matter if the animal is a competition animal, a service animal, or is otherwise subject to an intact animal permit.
- Because the proposal clarifies that the fees to be paid are, “for services rendered before redemption”, sterilization procedures will be required to be performed before an owner can redeem their animal from the shelter.
For this reason, the American Kennel Club continues to urge the Dallas City Council to maintain the current exceptions in Sec. 7-2.6 for competition animals, service animals, or those subject to an intact animal permit. We further urge all responsible dog owners and exhibitors in the area to contact city councilmembers in opposition to the proposed changes. We continue to believe that maintaining these exceptions will not hamper the City’s goal of its shelter maintaining “no kill” status.
The American Kennel Club will continue to provide updates on this Dallas proposal as developments warrant. For more information, contact AKC Government Relations at firstname.lastname@example.org.