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home : opinion : editorial July 26, 2017

7/12/2017 10:17:00 AM
Licenses and pets

Several weeks ago, Councilman Rod Byam publicly expressed his amazement, "that there are apparently so few dogs in Windom."
Rod was referred to the scant 83 licenses issued for Windom dogs and cats in 2017.
Of course we all know that the real pet total is significantly higher. However, we should add that the license shortage is not nearly as severe as it was in 2016, when only 57 licenses were issued.
There is no doubt a large number of pet owners who see pet license fees as strictly a fundraiser for the city. If so, at $8 per unspayed female and $5 for all others, it is not highly profitable.
In reality, the license is a service to pet owners. Each license carries a valuable "pet license record," which includes vaccination and contact information.
Look at it this way, if your dog or cat gets loose, it may well get reported and picked up by police and transported to the Cottonwood Veterinary Clinic. Once there, the pet is held until the owner is found.
This is where problems can arise. If a pet is licensed, staff can track down the pet's vaccination record and owner's contact information within minutes.
On the other hand, if a pet is not licensed, there are immediate questions of whether the pet is vaccinated and how to reach the owner. Staff time is being wasted searching for the owner and the Veterinary Clinic may have to hold the pet for several days.
Imagine for a moment that while the unlicensed pet was running loose it bit a child. Now the rabies question comes to the forefront.
The city has wisely set the impound fee at $20 for pets with a license and $40 for those without a license. In addition, the boarding fee is $10 per day for licensed pets and $15 for unlicensed pets.
Many residents may be unaware of the city's pet license laws and some may have forgotten about them. It is not too late to purchase your license for 2017.
Who knows, maybe your pet's license will help save a youngster from having to receive a painful rabies shot.
    - Rahn Larson

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