ODESSA, TX (KWES) - Overcrowding has caused some close calls for the Odessa Animal Shelter. Odessa pet owners may soon be required to spay and neuter their pet to help with the overpopulation issue.
"We might be able to get 40 to 60 animals out in one week, but you have to understand we average 16 to 20 animals a day that intakes 365 days a year," said Shelter Director Jacque Adimare.
Every few days, the shelter gets four to five litters of puppies. In the past few months, the problem has grown, making it harder and harder to operate under a no-kill equation. Now, they're taking matters into their own hands.
Animal control teamed up with the City Attorney's Office to amend the animal control ordinance.
"Making sure that we are addressing animal cruelty within the ordinance itself. Making sure that we are promoting responsible pet ownership. Looking at ways to promote a healthy animal population within the city," said Assistant City Attorney Vanessa Ramirez.
Along with requiring pet owners to provide adequate shelter from the elements and appropriate amounts of food and water, the ordinance will require EVERY pet owner to spay and neuter their animal.
There are some exceptions though:
- If you are a certified breeder
- If you are visiting Odessa for a certain amount of days
- If you pet is a show animal
- or if your pet is not in good enough health to go under the knife
Although the city believes the ordinance will help with over population and crowding in the shelter, they realized this new rule may be hard to police. Animal control believes something needs to be done.
"Eventually there is going to have to be a fine line of something has to be, this has to be dealt with," said Adimare. "Right now what we are doing is we are dealing with band-aids. We are putting band-aids on the situation."