According to local officials, a recent licensing law, coupled with a registration and vaccination drive for dogs in Plantersville, Mississippi is already reaping benefits. They have seen a reduction in roaming dogs, more lost dogs returned to their owners rather than sent to the shelter, and, of course, we don’t have to explain the benefits of rabies shots. So far, it sounds like a win-win for everyone. And in light of this success, neighboring towns are reportedly curious about enacting similar policies themselves.
Now, the idea that you pass a law affecting pet owners, and suddenly the number of roaming dogs and intakes goes down might seem simple and self-evident to some people. But the truth is, there are a lot of instances where you don’t see such an obvious cause-and-effect with animal laws. Many aren’t effective at all, in fact. What happened here, is that a clear and reasonable set of rules were laid out for pet owners, accompanied with encouragement and engagement. There is nothing that felt arbitrary or punitive – just an ordinance that pet owners – the vast majority of whom are law-abiding, humane, and want the best for their animals and communities – would view as a net-positive and be happy to support. Now that is a formula for success!