Pet dumping likely to increase, warn animal lovers

Residents launch online petition to request Ajman Municipality to ‘re-think’ new rules governing pets

Pet dumping will be the result, say hundreds of animal lovers, in response to the new rules imposed by Ajman Municipality and Planning Department.

Last week Chairman of the Department Sheikh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi announced a new resolution on regulating possession of domestic pet animals like cats and dogs.

Apart from requiring pet owners to obtain a license from the Department's Administration of Public Health and Environment to have a pet, the resolution also limits the maximum number of pets per household to two, and pets cannot be held in residences lacking a garden.

The reaction of pet owners and lovers was swift. Within a week an online petition was launched and signed by 1,344 people at the time of this writing.

“Please re-think some of the recent changes to be implemented in Ajman with regards to the "2 dog Limit"... This will result in "Pet Dumping" by the hundreds in and around Ajman,” says the petition.

Supporters of the petition express concern over the situation about those who currently have more than two pets or who have pets but no garden.

“So yes more will just be dumped by certain people and not fair on those who look after and have more than two,” says one.

“I’d rather move house/city/country than dump Charlie,” comments a dog owner.

I.K., a Syrian lady who lives in Ajman and keeps a cat is surprised by the rules. “I only have one cat, but it is my personal right to decide how many pets I have. What if my cat gets pregnant? Should I get rid of the kittens?” she wonders.

Lize Cooper, owner of two dogs and a kitten lives in Dubai but supports Ajman pet lovers. "I cannot imagine I get rid of one of my pets," she says.

Until now it is unclear what the desired procedure for those with more than two pets or no garden will be. Reported is that the department of Public Health and Environment ought to be informed of the situation of each pet owner, after which a decision will be taken on whether the pet can be kept or not.

The concerned department could not be reached for comment.

"Responsible pet owners pay annual municipal registration fees – the government should use these funds to facilitate education, rather than implement unrealistic measures that in will only result in more pets being abandoned," thinks Lize.

Critique also points out the affect of the rules on adoption or foster practices. "So many stray cats around, this will discourage fostering and adoption also," commented Farooq on the news published on this website.

The petition calls for the set-up of an animal shelter in Ajman.

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