4-07-1150 - Findings

The Board of Supervisors makes the following findings in support of the enactment of this Chapter:

  1. The County of Tulare has a compelling interest in protecting the public health, safety, and welfare of its residents and businesses, and preserving the peace and integrity of communities within the unincorporated area.
  2. The County of Tulare has a compelling interest in protecting animal welfare and maintaining minimum standards of animal care.
  3. In 2018, Tulare County Animal Services took 7,022 animals into the County shelter. Of those, only 4,248 were able to be rehomed.
  4. The Humane Society of the United States cites that 2.4 million healthy, adoptable animals are euthanized in U.S. shelters each year, amounting to roughly every 13 seconds.  These animals are often the offspring of family pets which are not spayed or neutered.
  5. In Tulare County, with its combination of rural and urban zones, stray and unregulated animals are both a danger to themselves as well as the public via auto accidents, property damage, and potential attacks on both humans and livestock.
  6. Unregulated animal keeping practices, unregulated animal sales, and unregulated breeding of dogs result in operations driven solely for profit with no concern for animal welfare, leading to animal abuse, illness, and abandonment. California taxpayers spend a quarter of a billion dollars annually to house and kill animals in local shelters while unregulated and irresponsible breeding facilities continue to breed animals in poor conditions for profit.
  7. The unregulated keeping of dogs poses a risk of attacks, bites, and menacing behavior by such dogs. In 2018, Tulare County reported 80 dog bites, with the majority of these bites being by owned, yet unvaccinated and/or unlicensed animals.
  8. Pet overpopulation and the unregulated keeping of dogs can have a negative effect on the general quality of life for surrounding areas, such as noise issues and malodorous smells.
  9. In an attempt to bring these problems under control it is necessary to (1) create permitting procedures within the County of Tulare to encourage and enforce compliance with local, state, and federal regulations on animal care and breeding, (2) create breeding permits per animal to encourage the humane treatment of breeding animals within the County and avoid pet overpopulation, (3) limit the number of animals to be kept in commercial and private kennels, and (4) establish minimum kennel requirements for commercial, private, and rescue kennels.
  10. Pursuant to Article XI, section 7 of the California Constitution, the County may adopt and enforce ordinances and regulations not in conflict with general laws to protect and promote the public health, safety, and welfare of its citizens.