Tulare County proposal could save pet owners money

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Leaders with Tulare County's Animal Control Office are making changes to their ordinances for the first time in eight years. (KFSN)

Leaders with Tulare County's Animal Control Office are making changes to their ordinances for the first time in eight years. If approved by the Board of Supervisors, the rules would make it easier for pet owners in the South Valley to address their concerns.

Each year, hundreds of Valley families take advantage of the services offered at the Tulare County Animal Control facilities. Leaders with Tulare County's Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) teamed up with local vets and shelters to come up with a plan to provide more flexible services.

"We worked to align it with changes in state law and the Tulare County Health and Human Services Agency's vision, mission and values," said Timothy Lutz with the HHSA.

Under their proposal, there would be a more formalized corrective action plan, allowing them to work with owners of problematic pets, rather than confiscating an animal right away.

"We can work with the owners on coming into compliance with whatever they might be out of compliance on, whether that's chronic barking, constantly getting out, those types of smaller nuisance things that become bigger problems later on," said Lutz.

Changes also provide incentives for pet owners whose pets are spayed and neutered. For example: those who go to the shelter to reclaim their pet will have to pay a significantly lower fee than owners whose pets aren't spayed or neutered.

"We know from a healthy community perspective, spaying and neutering your pets is critical; it keeps overpopulation down, ideally keeping animals out of our shelter and out of rescues," said Lutz.

Additionally, every dog that makes its way out of the shelter will be microchipped. Leaders received some input from pet owners in the rural areas they cover by holding community forums.

"A lot of cities adopt the ordinances as their own or adopt larger portions of it," said Lutz.

When the organization meets with the Tulare County Board of Supervisors next Tuesday evening, they're hoping for support from the residents who rely on their services.
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petsanimalanimal newspoliticsVisaliaTulare County
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