After tabling a vote on a proposal to restict the number of pets owners in the City of Oneida could have to four pets per household, the common council has now decided that legislation meant to curb animal hoarding will not place numeral limits on owners.
"Given that there are people who are actually restoring these animals to health and caring for them in a very dutiful and loving way, it didn't seem right that we would make it hard or penalize them when they're actually part of the solution," said Oneida mayor Max Smith.
Oneida originally looked into creating limits on pets per household after a six-month rash of hoarding cases in Madison county. But animal rescue advocates voiced strong oposition to such limits, pointing out that animal abuse and the number of pets in a home are mutually exclusive.
"Someone can own seven dogs and be a great owner and keep their pets comletely healthy and another person can own one pet and be abusive," said Dee Schafer, Humane Educator at Wanderers' Rest Humane Association and foster parent to 11 pets.
Oneida will now seek to draft legislation that cracks down on abusive pet owners, without placing limits on pet ownership.