The ordinance that limits the number of pets a household can have has been repealed, Quezon City Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte said on Wednesday after groups of furious pet lovers and animal advocates stormed city hall.
Belmonte explained that the Quezon City Veterinary Code, which was passed on March 26, 2015, repealed Ordinance 2386, which limits to four the number of pets households can keep. She said the code updated and integrated all applicable laws and ordinances concerning animals.
Ordinance 2386, signed on March 13, 2015, requires those who want to keep more than four pets to pay P500 for a special permit. The controversial ordinance was authored by Councilors Raquel Malangen and Jessica Castelo-Daza.
“The Veterinary Code, as the more recent ordinance, has modified the Comprehensive Animal Regulation and Control ordinance,” Belmonte explained.
She invited stakeholders, especially pet lovers, to participate in the crafting of the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of the Veterinary Code.
But Belmonte’s statement did not placate animal advocates, who demanded that the vice mayor come out with an official document repealing the controversial ordinance.
Anna Cabrera, executive director of the Philippine Animal Welfare Society (PAWS), said the questioned ordinance “is too vague and open to interpretation by anyone and makes it a tool for rent-seeking government enforcers and a tool for harassment by unfriendly neighbors.”
“The ordinance undermines animal rescue efforts, spray or neuter efforts and fostering, while supporting breeding and trading of pets even if by irresponsible breeders and traders,” Cabrera added.
“It dishonors responsible pet ownership including responsibly keeping at home dogs that are not socially competent,” she explained.
City Veterinary division head Ana Marie Cabel denied charges that Ordinance 2386 was a money-making venture.
She said the city government wanted to teach households to become more responsible pet owners since 90 percent of the 13,231 animal bite cases recorded in QC come from pets.