City In Yunnan Province Bans Residents Walking Their Dogs On The Street For 15 Hours Daily

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A city in Yunnan province is facing controversies following its implementation on banning residents from walking their pet dogs on the street between 7 am to 10 pm per day. The authorities in the city of Wenshan ordered all dogs in public places should be on a leash which is no longer than one meter and adults were the only one allowed to exercise the animals, according to the notice posted on the municipal government.

An animal health inspector in Wenshan said the ban had been implemented to stop dog attacks and avoid the spread of rabies. The Wenshan urban management official also noted that the rules were introduced as a response to residents who are complaining.

As per the South China Morning Post, before implementing the ban last week, the official's department had several calls from residents each day complaining they have been attacked or harassed by dogs on streets, and there had been no complaints since the order went into effect.

The time was selected to prevent disturbing people who were exercising or while on their way home. An unnamed official said many people are out after 7 am so it will be inconvenient when there are dogs around them, and people weren't on the street after 10 pm, so the dogs were allowed to go out at that time. There will be no penalties when someone broke the rules, but instead, the authorities will educate them.

Meanwhile, the ban was supported by several people online, hoping the rules will be implemented in other parts of the country as well. One online user wrote on Weibo, China's Twitter-like social media platform, that her pregnant colleague was traumatized after being chased by a dog. Another user supports the rules, saying that if dog owners love their dog, they should get up early or sleep late at night just to walk them.

However, some people disagree with the policy as the order will make dog owners exhausted, so they should rather ban residents having dogs, instead of banning them from walking their pet on the streets for 15 hours a day. A resident in Jilin province also shared her thoughts online, noting that it's frightening for her to walk her pet dog late at night.

Pet owners in China should vaccinate their dogs and must pay for a license fee over 2,000 Yuan (US$290) -depends on the animal's size - and after that, the license should be renewed every year. However, some dog owners don't register their pets, and unregistered dogs were usually culled.

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