Love your pets? Look after them

Editorial

IT is time people take responsibility for their pets by making sure they stay within their home premises and not roam the streets.
There are pets confined in their owner’s property while those that are termed as street dogs (may be stray dogs), are pets which have strayed from or are allowed freedom by their owners, or may be feral animals that have never been owned.
Take a drive around a neighbourhood and you will surely see dogs on the street. And it can be an ugly site, too.
When stray pets roam our neighborhoods, it’s not only dangerous for the pets but for the people who live there, too.
People living in those neighbourhoods also are exposed to more encounters with dogs, which can lead to dog attacks.
Haphazard urban planning and human overpopulation have led to a correspondingly huge population of street dogs. They bark and howl – an accompaniment to dog fights which invariably take place over mating.
These are the pets that should be hauled and taken away.
The National Capital District Commission has announced a rule that a residence can only have two pets at the most, whether they be cat or dog.
The pets must be registered with the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA).
While the initiative to register the dogs and cats is commendable and long overdue, we believe people have the right to an unlimited number of pets (especially dogs and cats), provided they take good care of them.
And that means registering them, keeping them within a fenced perimeter and regularly taking them to a vet for check-ups, treatment and vaccination.
The city boss says the breeding and keeping of animals and birds other than cats or dogs is an offence and is punishable by law.
We agree that this activity is increasing in the city and challenge NCDC to take action.
The Public Health (Sanitation and General) Regulation states a person who keeps a pig in a residence is guilty of an offence. Offenders can expect a fine of K100 and in addition, in the case of a continuing offence, a fine not exceeding K10 for every day during which the offence continues.
Breeding pigs in a residential area in any city is undesirable and disrespect the neighbours.
It becomes disgusting when a neighbour’s over-sized zoo is dirty and smelly with pets lacking exercise.
The rules prohibit keeping an animal in an unsanitary condition.
There are some households in the city that have too many pets and/or may be too small to house them properly, which results in complaints of neglect, noise and domestic waste.
Having restrictions on how many pets Port Moresby residents can keep in their home may be well-intentioned, but it is not fair on pet-lovers.
And pets are to be given adequate and appropriate care, food, water, shelter, exercise, attention and veterinary care.
If someone can effectively do all that for two or more cats or dogs they should not be banned from having them.

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