Memphis has adopted a mandatory spay-neuter ordinance.
In legislation that moved Memphis into ranks with cities such as Denver and Los Angeles, the Memphis City Council approved a mandatory spay/neuter ordinance for dogs and cats on Tuesday.
About 100 people attended last night’s city council meeting with half in favor of MSN and half opposed. Where was Memphis Animal Shelter director Matthew Pepper’s opposition? Was he even there? Maybe he’s not at all concerned about saving his community’s pets, I don’t know.
Ordinance supporters argued that with about 16,000 animals euthanized in Memphis each year, a spay/neuter ordinance is a progressive solution to the problem.
Unless Memphis somehow breaks the mold, the number of pets killed annually under MSN will not be reduced and may well increase.
Under the Memphis ordinance, there are some exemptions – but not for the pet owners who need them. For example, dogs registered with the AKC – that paragon of virtue – need not be altered. But poor people, feral cat colony caretakers, owners who lack transportation to and from the clinic and others who need assistance in getting their pets neutered get a big fat nothing from the ordinance by way of special treatment.
In the absence of Matthew Pepper, the pets of Memphis had to look elsewhere for a voice to speak on their behalf:
“If you enforce the leash law, then the leash law will take animals off the street, reduce complaint calls and we’ll end up with less animals at the shelter,” said Donna Malone of Responsible Animal Owners of Tennessee, in opposition of the law.