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Does my dog have to wear a rabies tag when he goes outside?
The city of St. Louis, Missouri has started to put a “rabies tag” on all dogs when they go out of their home. What is a rabies tag? How does this work? Why? Why not?
To my knowledge, a rabies tag is not required in all states in the U.S. for dogs to go out of their home. According to the Animal Legal Defense Fund, the city of St. Louis is “the first of its size” in the United States to implement a mandatory requirement to have a rabies tag with a microchip on all dogs.
If you are not familiar with the Microchipping Program, I wrote about it here:
If you have not registered your dog with a reputable company that uses the microchip, please read about the importance of registering your dog. It can be done for free, and if you do not have the information, I can help you.
The City of St. Louis has made a commitment to enforce this ordinance, and all dogs will be vaccinated prior to going out of the home if they have not been vaccinated in the past six months. They can be fined $100 if they do not have the microchip.
The ordinance was enacted in February 2015, but there was a delay in enforcing it until October 2015.
I wrote about this issue last year on the Dog Whisperer Facebook page. Here is what I had to say in April 2015:
“It is common sense. The microchip and rabies vaccine are not an option for an owner to decide to take their dog to a public park or beach, for a walk, or go camping. A microchip and rabies vaccination are the very basics that an owner has to have in their dog if they intend on being in public. The city of St. Louis, Missouri has decided that they are not going to enforce the current ordinance requiring the owner to have a microchip.”
A person that does not microchip their dog is putting their family at risk.
Dogs are social creatures, and they do not want to be alone.
If a microchip is not put in your dog, you are putting your family at risk. If your dog is not microchipped, he or she can wander into a shelter, a park, or even the back of a trailer and someone could be bitten by that dog.
Why would a shelter or a park even have a dog that is not microchipped? Why would a dog be roaming the streets? The answer to that is simple. Because the owner is irresponsible.
I agree that there is a problem with irresponsible pet ownership, but I don’t think putting a microchip and rabies tag on your dog should be the solution.
The city of St. Louis is just trying to help, but the fact is that they are infringing on a person’s constitutional rights.
The city of St. Louis is in effect, saying that your dog is property of the city, and if you do not have the microchip, you do not have any rights. The city has decided that you are not allowed to have your dog out of your home without being microchipped.
The city of St. Louis is not the only city that has decided to try to make sure that all dogs have rabies tags.
In June 2015, the city of Fort Wayne, Indiana also enacted a law requiring that all dogs be microchipped and have a rabies tag.
In July 2015, the city of Cincinnati, Ohio also enacted a law requiring that all dogs be microchipped.
The state of Florida has a law in place that allows a dog to be euthanized if the owner fails to have a microchip, or fails to have the tag on the microchip.
There is something very wrong with a city or a state forcing people to do something.
This issue is being looked at all across the United States.
In October of 2015, the city of Huntington, West Virginia enacted an ordinance requiring that all dogs be microchipped and have a rabies tag.
The city of St. Petersburg, Florida is also looking into having a similar ordinance.
These ordinances are not just a problem for cities and states. They are a problem for a person when they decide to not microchip their dog.
If you do not microchip your dog, I do not know how I would feel if I lived in your town or state. If the law is in place, and you choose not to microchip your dog, I would be afraid of it.
I think it is important that we get the microchip and rabies tag laws on the books in all of the states.
If you are a dog owner, you need to make sure that your dog has a microchip and a rabies tag.
If your dog is microchipped, and if you have registered him or her with the microchip company, I can help you get it removed if it was put on incorrectly.
If you do not have your dog registered with a microchip company, then you can do that for free. If you have not been doing it, I can help you. I will post about it again when it is time to do this.
I am so thankful to have a city in our area that is taking the time to make sure that our pets have all of their basic health needs.