Animal welfare groups who wish to care for unclaimed impounded dogs in Baguio City may now be turned over to them. This is after the city council approved the amendments in the implementing rules and regulations of the Responsible Dog Ownership ordinance also known as Ordinance no. 19-2021.
It can be recalled that there were several calls to adopt unclaimed dogs in the city pound which are mostly coming from private citizens. This voluntary act of simply sharing on social media brought awareness to the public and intensified the call for individuals to adopt a dog from the Baguio City pound.
Dogs that were not claimed nor adopted may be subjected to euthanasia, something that animal welfare groups and dog enthusiasts are trying to prevent.
This is why allowing the turn-over of these healthy unclaimed dogs from the Baguio City pound will help in prolonging the lives of these dogs until such time that they are adopted.
Related Article: How to adopt a dog at the Baguio City Pound
Implementing Guidelines for Animal Welfare groups
Prior to the turn-over of unclaimed dogs to animal welfare groups such groups must adhere to the following guidelines:
- The Animal Welfare group must be accredited by the Baguio City Government and the Department of Agriculture
- Upon the recommendation of the City Veterinary and Agriculture Office (CVAO) a memorandum of agreement shall be executed between the City Government of Baguio and the Animal welfare group
- The turned-over dogs shall be treated according to the provisions of Republic Act No. 8485 [An Act to Provide Animal Welfare in the Philippines, Otherwise known as “The Animal Welfare Act of 1998”]
- A monthly report shall be submitted to CVAO on the status of the turned-over dogs.
- Turned-over dogs shall not be used for financial gains like sale, or solicitation among others.
- Any violations committed by the Animal Welfare groups will result to the nullification of the memorandum of agreement (MOA).
On Taking Photos by Private Individuals and Social Media Posting
According to section 23 of the city ordinance, “widest dissemination for dogs available for adoption shall be utilized with the assistance of accredited animal welfare non-government organizations, when feasible.”
This was the basis of the Animal welfare groups represented by Lovely Tuazon who questioned the rarity of posting on the official facebook page of CVAO regarding the dogs that are up for adoption or those dogs that are to be claimed by owners. They further questioned the policy of CVAO on restricting private individuals from taking photos and sharing such on their social media accounts to bring about awareness.
The need for fast information dissemination
The importance of providing speedy information on dogs that are up for adoption or for claiming by their owners was reiterated, this is because according to the Responsible Dog Ownership Ordinance in relation to the Animal Welfare Act, dogs that were not claimed or adopted within three days will be subjected for disposal by euthanasia.
It is because of this an amendment compelling CVAO to post photos of dogs up for claiming and adoption at least twice a week. Private individuals who also wish to disseminate information by taking photos of impounded dogs may now be possible as long as permission is given by CVAO and subject to the guidelines formulated by the said office. It is however unclear how stringent such guidelines would be for private individuals who only wish to help the impounded dogs get home or find a new home.