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Possible animal ordinance changes thwarted by the people

Possible changes to the city’s animal ordinance has El Pasoans speaking out.

City officials held a meeting Thursday evening in effort to get some public input.

From microchipping to a four-pet limit in homes it got the attention of pet owners and rescue shelters alike.

The proposed changes have got people talking.

ABC-7 went to a meetings two weeks ago and there was about 12 people.
on this day it was a packed house.

One by one pet lovers filled the room. Many were pulling out their pen and pads for others just finding a spot was an issue.

“It’s great. A lot of people came out and that’s what we wanted,” said El Paso Code Compliance Manager Elda Hefner.

Hefner spearheaded the meeting.

There were two hot topics that took center stage:
Should the city not require pet owners to microchip their pets? And should there be a four-pet limit to a home.

The idea was quickly questioned. One by one concerned El Pasoans spoke up.

El Pasoans like Loretta Hyde. Hyde runs the Animal Rescue League of El Paso.
The shelter takes in about 70 abandoned abused or lost dogs a month.
The idea of not requiring pet owners to microchip their dogs concerns Hyde.

“I think it’s absolutely ridiculous,” said Hyde. She says microchipped pets would less likely end up in a shelter.

“I’ve returned animals back to California, Utah. The dog that was registered stolen it ended up here at the vets office,” said Hyde.

Hyde also doesn’t agree with four pets to a household:

“You can have five to 10 animals if they are all behaved they are all spayed and neutered and all up to date on their shots and if they are not a nuisance to their neighbors,” said Hyde.

Hyde told ABC-7 the city needs to focus more on irresponsible pet owners.

Hefner says the idea of pet owners not having to microchip their pets has been nixed by the people, “We don’t really think that’s going to go forth.”

As for the four pets to a home rule:

“Limiting the numbers of animals is probably not reasonable at this time,” said Hefner.

The city wants to continue to hear your ideas and opinions.

The next meeting will be June 4 at the City Council chambers located at 300 N. Campbell Street starting at 5:30 p.m.

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