The unregulated breeding of pets has contributed to a rise in the stray dog menace in the city

Pet shops in the city will soon be regularised by the Chennai Corporation.

The Corporation Council, in its next meeting, will make a decision on including pet shops in the trade licence net and take steps to regularise such shops.

The inclusion of pet shops in the list of trades will reinforce existing mechanisms of ensuring minimum standards of sanitation, ventilation, heating, cooling, humidity, special and enclosure requirements, nutrition, medical treatment, methods of operations and maintenance of records.

The unregulated breeding of pets has contributed to problems including the rise in stray dog menace. Many breeders are found to abandon pets including dogs after finding them commercially unviable. This has been a source of many civic problems.

The civic body recently procured eight new vehicles for animal birth control as councillors had been reporting incidents of stray dog menace over the past few months. But the efforts of the civic body to strengthen animal birth control programme are yet to have the desired results because of the lack of a mechanism to regularise pet shops.

After the expansion of the city limits, the number of calls made to the helpline for stray dog control has increased considerably. In addition to stray dog menace, the lack of a monitoring mechanism leads to loss of revenue and is a cause of concern with regards to public health in the city.

A number of exotic species of fishes and birds sold in such shops fetch prices ranging from Rs.1000 to Rs.2 lakhs. Each of the 200 wards has at least two pet shops. The civic body will be able to take measures on public health issues only after regularisation of such shops.

The Corporation Council, a few months ago, passed a resolution permitting the issue of trade licence in the added areas.

The council also took a major step towards streamlining of the system for issuing trade licences in the city. The number of licensed trades in the old city limits was 194 and the new proposal covered 575 trades. The new additions included trades such as flower shops, book binding, animal skin processing and hair processing.

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