CREATED Oct. 8, 2013
THOUSAND PALMS - The Riverside County Board of Supervisors unanimously voted for Ordinance 921, which mandates all owners of pitbull and pitbull mixes over the age of four months to be sterilized.
This applies to the 63 unincorporated areas in the county such as Bermuda Dunes, Thousand Palms, Thermal and Mecca.
One of the main reasons the supervisors gave on the their votes was public safety, citing recent attacks in the county. The other was to try and lower the overpopulation of pit bulls in county shelters.
The ordinance crafted by the county's Animal Services Department would exempt registered breeders, law enforcement officers and disabled who use this breed as a service dog.
According to the Chief Veterinarian of the county's Animal Services Department, Allan Drusys, 20 percent of the dogs impounded in county shelters are pit bulls, and this breed accounts for 30 percent of all dogs put down. He adds that the adoption rate for adult pit bulls is close to none.
At Tuesday's public hearing, 17 people ranging from pet owners and dog show presenters took the stand and voiced their opinions on this policy before the board passed it.
There was discussion of including an exemption to the ordinance for show dog owners.
The ordinance was first introduced to the board of supervisors in April