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3K animal bites alarm city leaders

Some 3,006 animal bites have been reported by the City Health Office since 2010 caused by dogs, cats, monkeys and pigs.

The high incidence of animal bites spurred Councilors Jose Victor Imbo and Michael Bandal to introduce legislation that will penalize irresponsible or negligent pet owners.

In sponsoring the proposed ordinance, the two councilors noted that rabies, which is one of the many dreaded diseases that are common to infect and kill people can be prevalent if there is a lack of systematic measure aimed at preventing such disease from infecting human beings via their rabid pet animals.

Based on the figures from the City Health 2,525 cases of dog bites were recorded in the last five years; 456 by cats, 7 bites by monkeys and 18 bite cases are caused bats and pigs.

There are also many instances when motorists are injured or lost their lives that were attributed to the presence of stray dogs and other animals on the road.

Under the ordinance requires pet owners to vaccinate their rabies-susceptible animals; provide their pets adequate health care and access to medical; to indemnify other persons and properties from any other harm or injury that their pets may have caused; remove excrement left by their pets in public places and to bury the pets in a suitable deep grave.

If enacted into an ordinance, erring pet owners shall be fined from P 500.00 to P1,500; upon filing of a criminal complaint and conviction, the violator can be meted a penalty of P5,000 or an imprisonment of no less than 20 days nor more than 30 days or both at the discretion of the court.