by Diane Tuazon
HOBBS, NEW MEXICO - The new Hobbs Animal Shelter opened its doors in July, now city officials want to enforce a new pet ordinance to help put a stop to the growing population of stray animals.
"Having animals is proven to be healthy, but not everyone can afford to care for one. Especially in Hobbs where the vet fees are high," Jennifer Berry of Hobbs, said.
"Our new ordinance contains a reclaim fee. If we catch an animal that's not spayed/neutered and they come to reclaim it, it costs $250," Asst. Chief Ernie Wheeler with the Hobbs Fire Dept., said.
However, some residents say that charging a fee may not work.
"I definitely agree with animals being spayed and neutered, but unfortunately they're are so many that aren't and I'm afraid that rather than paying the fee, people will leave their animals at the shelter," Berry said.
That's not all that's been added to the new pet ordinance. Soon anyone looking to adopt a pet from the shelter will have to learn a few things.
"We do adoption counseling. We adopt animals after we counsel people on what it takes to own an animal. We have people think shelter for a dog is a 2x4 board on a crate. The new oridance defines what the shelter is specifically," Wheeler said.
Wheeler says having this new pet ordinance will help get the community get a step closer to a better understanding of what a good pet owner is.