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Post Info TOPIC: Mandatory Spay/Neuter info - long (1)

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Mandatory Spay/Neuter info - long (1)

Long read but worth it, even if you walk away with just a couple items you never considered before:

Date: April 14, 2008 9:01:05 AM PDT

Subject: Santa Barbara spay/neuter

Santa Barbara Spay/Neuter Ordinance

Flies In Face Of Facts, Ignores Reality


American Sporting Dog Alliance


SANTA BARBARA, CA - A proposed ordinance to mandate pet sterilization flies
in the face of one basic fact. The current system of voluntary spaying and
neutering, combined with increased public awareness, has been incredibly
successful by any standard of measure.

Between 1990 and 2005 (the last year for which complete data is available),
the number of dogs entering the Santa Barbara municipal shelter fell by
33-percent, and the number of dogs euthanized dropped by 5smile.gifercent,
according to official data submitted to the California Department of Health

The trend is continuing at an even more rapid annual rate, the data shows.
Between 2002 and 2005, the number of dogs entering the shelter has declined
by 14-percent, and the number euthanized by 24-percent.

In any other endeavor, those kinds of statistics would be used as evidence
of overwhelming success. Instead, animal rights groups that have a larger
agenda are trying to convince the county Board of Supervisors that their
efforts have failed, and sterner measures are needed.

Next month, the supervisors are slated to vote on an ordinance that would
mandate the spaying and neutering of many dogs in the county.

Aside from the statistical evidence, the proposed ordinance ignores the
facts in many other regards. It ignores:

*    The fact that similar ordinances in other communities, both in
California and elsewhere, have completely backfired, causing a sharp rise in
shelter admissions and euthanasia that took several years to level off. This
is believed to be because many people abandon their pets, rather than face
citations and fines, or because they cannot afford the cost. In addition,
dog license sales and revenues have declined.

*    The fact that the characteristics of the dogs entering the shelter
conclusively prove that any form of spaying or neutering is unlikely to have
a noticeable impact on the statistics. Nationwide studies have shown that
20-to-25-percent of the dogs entering shelters are brought there by their
owners specifically to be euthanized because of old age or illness, that
"pit bull" purebreds and crosses account for another 20-to-25-percent, and
that most of the rest of the dogs that are euthanized are not adoptable
because of age, illness or temperament problems.

*    The fact that those three categories of dogs account for almost all
of the shelter euthanasia (881 dogs in 2005), and that the rest of the dogs
are either returned to their owners (1,887 in 2005), or adopted by
individuals or rescue groups (1,356 dogs were adopted and another 616
rescued in 2005). Those numbers show dramatically that mandatory
sterilization would have virtually no impact on the shelter.

*    The fact that rescue groups now take virtually all surplus dogs from
the shelter that are considered to be adoptable. These dedicated groups of
caring people quickly find homes for any dog that is small, cute and
friendly, or of a popular breed.

*    The fact that these rescue groups are so successful that they are
importing hundreds of dogs into Santa Barbara County every year from
shelters in rural parts of California and other states to meet the exploding
demand for adoptable pets.

*    The fact that tens of thousands of dogs and puppies are brought into
California each year from Mexico to meet the demand for adoptable dogs, and
many of these animals wind up in Santa Barbara County. Other foreign imports
to the county come from as far away as Taiwan, Korea and Puerto Rico.

*    The fact that the current number of these imports completely offsets
any gains that might be made by mandatory sterilization, and that these
imports likely would increase if the number of adoptable dogs at the shelter
is reduced, because of the high consumer demand for certain kinds of dogs.

*    The fact that there is substantial evidence that an increase in
imported dogs, especially from other countries, substantially increases the
risk of rabies, canine diseases and other medical problems. The only known
incidences of canine rabies in the past 10 years were found in shelter
imports from Mexico and Puerto Rico, according to the U.S. Center for
Disease Control and Prevention.

*    And the fact that there is a growing body of scientific evidence
that spaying and neutering can have adverse affects on dogs' health and well
being, especially when it is done before sexual maturity. While the majority
of veterinarians support sterilization and believe the benefits outweigh the
risks, research findings have caused many veterinarians to rethink this
issue. Because of the significantly increased risks reported in some
veterinary medicine research, we believe that the decision should be left up
to the pet owner in consultation with his or her veterinarian. Mandatory
sterilization also could expose county government to significant legal and
financial liabilities, especially in light of the doubts cast by current
research. Research has linked increases to several serious and often fatal
illnesses to sterilization. The information will be described in detail
later in this report.

The American Sporting Dog Alliance represents owners, hobby breeders and
professionals who work with breeds of dogs that are used for hunting. We are
a grassroots movement working to protect the rights of dog owners, and to
assure that the traditional relationships between dogs and humans maintains
its rightful place in American society and life. Please visit us on the web
at  <>

  Christina Ghimenti
PawPrint Boxers
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