Animal Limit Laws

Our species is unable to live a life of moderation.  For that reason, laws are made so that our lack of moderation does not adversely effect the quality of life for our neighbors.  Pet limit laws are a good example.

Barking dogs is an area in which a pet owner can be in possession of one or more noise nuisance animals and the owner just ignores the adverse effect that their dogs have on their neighbors.  Clearly the more uncontrolled animals that a person owns makes the conditions untenable for the neighbors.  The fact that pet owners care so little for their neighbors requires that communities create laws that limit the number of animals per household.

The formula is different for each community.  Many communities will allow more animals per household if the animals have been spayed or neutered.  We’ve even allowed fostering of animals from the local animal shelter to be exempt from the animal count at a specific household.

The formula becomes even more complicated when you are looking at single family housing verses multifamily housing.  Exceptions are made for underaged animals, so that infant animals can remain with their mother until such time as they are eating on their own.

Kennel licensing is a method in which you throw out your pet limit law to allow people to house greater numbers of animals.  The issuing of kennel licenses are frequently the case of neighborhood disputes.  Animal Control Officers should use great care in determining if a person is able to care for a large number of animals without impacting their neighbors.

I have frequently found that in dealing with animal complaints, people who have lived in the neighborhood the longest seem to believe they have more rights than people who have lived in the neighborhood the shortest period of time.  They are always shocked to learn that their seniority offers no perks over that of their neighbors.

Animal ownership is one of the major factors that limit the livability of a neighborhood.  The more callous the pet owner, the greater need for laws.   If pitbull owners had proven themselves more responsible, breed bans would not be considered in communities.  It is unfortunate that a few bad pet owners make things harder on everyone else.