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Last night, ARFF representatives attended a town hall meeting in West Palm Beach that brought together purebred dog fanciers, staff from Palm Beach County Animal Care & Control, and concerned citizens to discuss a proposed ordinance that would require owners of dogs and cats in Palm Beach County to spay or neuter their animals. We must have heard the term “responsible breeder” a dozen times during the meeting.

In our opinion, regardless of how business-like a breeding operation is, it is irresponsible to intentionally breed a dog or cat when thousands of animals are being killed each year at county shelters, simply because there aren’t enough homes for them. Approx. 75,000 animals have been killed at Palm Beach County Animal Care & Control over the last five years!

The ordinance is not a perfect fix, and it isn’t the only step the community needs to take to fight the tragedy of dog and cat overpopulation, but the ordinance can be an important part of the solution.

The Board of County Commissioners will vote on the mandatory spaying and neutering ordinance at their meeting on January 15, 2008. Visit our website to learn how you can contact the commission and express your support for a mandatory spaying and neutering ordinance.

postscript: One of our favorite moments during the meeting was when a “responsible” breeder (Heidi Cole, of the Jupiter-Tequesta Dog Club) joked about her unneutered dog escaping from her home and roaming the neighborhood for a day.

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