In early June 2018, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike or the BBMP proposed the implementation of a series of by-laws to regulate pet ownership in the city.
One Dog Per Apartment
Besides mandating that pet parents have updated licenses for their pets and pick up after them in public spaces, these laws also put a cap on the number of dogs that could be kept at each residence.
For apartments, the upper limit is one dog per apartment and for independent homes it is three. The civic body also put forward a list of recommended breeds for apartments which consisted largely of toy breeds. Golden Retrievers (a popular breed in the city) and even our own Indian Pariahs (or Indies) were noticeably absent from this list.
Pet parents welcome pet licensing and enforcing responsible pet parenting practices like scooping poop in public spaces. But they do believe that restricting the number of dogs kept in each home would be an infringement of their democratic rights.
Animal welfare workers met with the Mayor Sampath Raj to discuss the issue and ensure that citizen voices were heard. He assured them that the laws would be put on hold until further discussion. A schoolteacher in the city, Indira Gopal Krishna filed a writ petition against the laws at the Karnataka High Court. The hearing for this was adjourned to June 20th, 2018 by a division bench consisting of Chief Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice Krishna S Dixit.
Spread the Word – #NotWithoutMyDog
The #NotWithoutMyDog campaign is a response to these laws. Trending on social media, it has been instrumental in getting pet parents across the city involved in protesting the laws.
Having more people talk about it helps spread the word and encourage engagement. More involvement from citizens is what the civic body needs, to take notice and to hear our side.
While #NotWithoutMyDog is kicking off conversations online, we have these stickers designed by Saptarshi Das to start conversations and demonstrate solidarity offline. They are priced at Rs.10 each to cover printing costs.