Bill being introduced for stricter sterilization laws for shelters

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DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — A new bill is being proposed to the state legislator requiring animal shelters and rescues to sterilize all cats and dogs 180 days or older before they can relinquish custody to the animal.

The bill would require these places to make provisions for all the animals in the shelter to be sterilized so they can’t reproduce.

Costs for this could be applied to adoption fees. Some places, however, already do this.

“Charm has always spade and neutered all the animals that come into the shelter, and we do have an agreement if we have puppies that are adopted out before the 180 days,” Charm Board of Directors Member Jo Geisler said.

For animals that are adopted before 180 days of age, an agreement will be signed by the adopter and shelter that the animal will be sterilized within 30 days of acquisition or after sexual maturity.

The sterilization must be verified by a licensed veterinarian. Some people, however, don’t get the adopted pet sterilized.

“Unless they’re going to audit shelters and actually come into the shelters and check records and everything,” Geisler said. “Our agreement requires that they have the vet or vet tech contact us and let us know that the procedure has been done.”

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