The words ‘dog walking ban’ will likely be a nightmare for many of you – and for your furry companion.
Well, this was a reality for the pet owners in the Weixin county in the Yunnan province of China, where after a spate of attacks by pets on humans, this measure was proposed to be put in place from November 20.
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Under the rules, anyone caught out with their dog would be warned. If they did so a second time, they would be fined anywhere between 50 yuan ($7) and 200 yuan ($28). Break this rule a third time, and their dog would be confiscated and killed.
This ruling hasn’t been popular, and the local authorities obviously realised this, with the new law subsequently being retracted. According to a report on the BBC, local officials said there would be a “rethink” about how to tackle the issues.
That they came to this conclusion isn’t surprising, considering the massive outcry on social media when the ban was first mooted.
This extended to the local area, with one interviewee talling local media, as reported in the Guardian: “If all forms of dog walking are prohibited in the urban area, isn’t that directly equivalent to declaring a ban on dog keeping?
“The dogs of the whole country shouldn’t have to bear the consequences of the misbehavior of a few dog owners.”
This isn’t the first time that China has been in the news for seemingly harsh rules related to dogs. Shanghai has a one-dog-per-household policy, as do the cities of Qingdao and Chengdu. Beijing has also seen its fair share of anti-dog laws, with one district banning the raising of dogs taller than 35cm.
Happily, it seems like for now, the people of Weixin will be able to walk their dogs free from potential legal ramifications. Hopefully they’ll be able to continue to do so.
Steve has combined editing and writing for publications like SciFiNow, How It Works and All About History with being a doormat to various cats and dogs. He lodges with two moggies called Giles and Willow, and will be told off if he doesn't mention his girlfriend's magnificent pooch, Toby.
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