AKC has just learned that the city council of Corpus Christi, Texas, is scheduled to consider extensive changes to the city’s animal ordinances on Tuesday, May 18. The American Kennel Club (AKC) has concerns with the proposal’s requirement that all dogs be spay/neutered on a first redemption from the city’s animal shelter; and believes that the current law, which requires spay/neuter requirement on a second redemption, is preferable. AKC encourages Corpus Christi residents to review the proposed changes and provide comment to the City Council today.
Proposed ordinance 21-0225 seeks to significantly update Chapter 6 of Corpus Christi’s ordinances, which concern Animal Care and Control. Significant changes to be made by the proposal include:
- Reducing the number of times a dog may be redeemed from the city’s Animal Control Services facility before being required to be spay or neutered, from two in a twelve-month period to one in its lifetime.
AKC appreciates that the proposal preserves the current ordinance’s affirmative defense from the spay/neuter requirement for owners that are members of a national breed club, local breed club, local all-breed club, sporting or hunting club, or if the dog was regularly shown during the six-months period immediately preceding impoundment. While government-mandated sterilization may be appropriate in addressing cases involving animals that are repeatedly found at-large; AKC believes that sterilization should not be required in instances of dogs that are impounded once due to an accidental release. Recent scientific studies demonstrate that spaying/neutering, particularly before a dog is fully mature, may result in detrimental long-term health impacts. Spaying/Neutering are major surgeries and the decision to spay or neuter a dog should be made by the dog’s owner in conjunction with their veterinarian.
- Creating new permit requirements for animal shows (undefined). Applications for permits must be submitted to Animal Care Services at least 20 days before the event and shall detail the number of animals to be involved, records showing that animals are up-to-date on required vaccinations and are considered healthy by a certified veterinarian, and other information. While affiliated clubs in Corpus Christi conduct their events outside of the city, AKC is concerned that these requirements would not be able to be met by clubs offering future events within the city, especially because the individual dog owners/handlers possess health records of their animals, not event-giving clubs.
- Replacing the city’s current dog license program with mandatory microchipping. All dogs and cats over four months of age shall be microchipped to be registered by both Animal Care Services and the issuing microchip company.
- Updating dangerous dog and aggressive dog ordinances, including the ability for dogs to be declassified as aggressive dogs if such dogs are owned without further incident for prescribed time periods.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
Concerned Corpus Christi residents are encouraged to contact the members of the City Council to express any concerns with proposed ordinance 21-0225, before its 11:30 AM meeting on Tuesday, May 18. Public comment/input may be provided, in writing, by completing and electronically submitting the following PUBLIC COMMENT/INPUT FORM (PREFERRED METHOD) or by submitting a written statement, limited to 1,000 characters, in person, at the City Secretary’s Office, City Hall, 1201 Leopard St., Corpus Christi, TX during regular business hours and no later than 5 minutes after the start of the meeting.
All City Council members may be contacted by phone at (361) 826-3105. City Council Members may be individually contacted via email:
Council Member Michael T. Hunter, At-Large – Michael.Hunter@cctexas.com
Council Member John Martinez, At-Large – John.Martinez@cctexas.com
Council Member Mike Pusley, At-Large – Mike.Pusley@cctexas.com
Council Member Billy A. Lerma, Dist. 1 – Billy.Lerma@cctexas.com
Council Member Ben Molina, Dist. 2 – Ben.Molina@cctexas.com
Council Member Roland Barrera, Dist. 3 – Roland.Barrera@cctexas.com
Council Member Greg Smith, Dist. 4 – Greg.Smith@cctexas.com
Council Member Gil Hernandez, Dist. 5 – Gil.Hernandez@cctexas.com
AKC Government Relations will continue to provide updates on Corpus Christi’s animal ordinance proposal as developments warrant. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.