THE animal welfare ordinance in Bacolod City was approved by the City Council on its third and final reading.
The ordinance was authored by Councilor Wilson Gamboa Jr., chairperson of the City Council committee on ways and means.
Gamboa said the ordinance aims to protect animals from abuse and cruelty, and to promote the right to health of the people and to safeguard the public from possible animal hazards.
He said this ordinance shall be enforced and implemented by the duly authorized officers of City Health Office, City Veterinary Office (CVO), City Legal Office, and/or of the duly authorized personnel of the barangay concerned after attending the educational training and seminar given by authorized office – an empowerment of the City Government of Bacolod to regulate the keeping of domesticated animals and to control stray and ownerless animals especially the dogs and cats.
He said the ordinance strictly provides a maximum number of four per household for dogs and/or cats or not more than eight pets; puppies and kittens less than four months old shall not be counted.
“More than eight pets are allowed by said ordinance provided the household has a good space secured by a closed fence and the vaccination requirements have been complied, and that all animals shall be kept in a sufficient space appropriate for them especially if it is in cage or kennel,” he added.
Gamboa noted that all cats and dogs shall be registered to the CVO after they reach three months of age and for commercial businesses of breeding, selling, vending, and training of animals, they should have a valid Animal Welfare Compliance Certificate issued by the CVO in addition to the requirements set by law, as the case may be.
Gamboa said those who found violating the ordinance shall be penalized of P1,000 for the first offense, P3,000, and P5,000 for the second and third offenses, respectively.
He said every pet owner are also required to have their dog and/or cat vaccinated with anti-rabies vaccines and to ensure that all dogs and cats in the city are properly immunized, registered, and wears the issued tag always while in public places.
He added the pet owner should also have an “animal tag,” a plastic or metal tag permanently hanging around the neck of each registered dog or cat issued by the CVO labelled with such information or serial numbers that would exactly and clearly identify the pet animal.
Gamboa disclosed that the “Animal Identification Card" is an identification card issued to pet owners by the CVO attesting he or she is the owner of the pet.