Mandatory Microchip Ordinance for Pets Considered
When will it end? That was the sentiment of many Leadville residents leaving a city work session last week.
First, it was enforcing $1,000 sidewalk fines for those not in compliance with the new snow removal ordinances. Next, it was the decision to introduce a “no-left-turn” traffic policy on Harrison Avenue. But when you start messing with people’s pets, it’s game on!
In an historic decision that is likely to leave some residents “chipped off,” city representatives are close to passing a new ordinance that would affect all pets within the town limits. In a special work session held last week, officials discussed a mandatory microchip identity program for Leadville pets which would involve implanting microchip ID tags into every domestic animal living within the city limits.
“The dog-at-large problem has gotten way out of control,” said a representative from the Cloud City Animal Shelter. “Putting these identity chips in pets will finally make the owners responsible for their animals.”
The presentation was made by Breeders United Locally in Leadville (BULL) who put the pressure on city officials. They want the issue resolved before the warmer weather comes on and the pack of dogs roaming free on the east aside doesn’t become an annual rite of spring, terrorizing hikers, joggers and cyclists.
“It puts a Leadville stamp on the animal,” explained Shirley U. Jest, president of BULL. The chip, which is surgically inserted just under the animal’s skin, has a unique PBville message and shape, much like the popular bumper stickers.
In addition, the chips also have high-tech GPS features which will allow pet owners to track their animal’s comings and goings throughout the day. In fact, one pet owner in attendance seemed to like that idea. “I’ve always wondered where my cat Cheddar Cheese wanders to when I let him out in the morning. Does it come with a camera option, then I can see his adventures first hand!”
But not many were laughing when it came to the steep price tags the mandatory microchips come with: $1,000 for cats and $1,500 for dogs, with additional rate structures for chickens, birds, reptiles and fish!
No doubt, the conversation will continue to heat up. The BULL Committee is pushing for city representatives to adopt the ordinance immediately, having enforcement in place by May 1, that’s one month from today which is April 1 . . . . also known as April Fool’s Day! Gotcha!