Simpsonville Council discussed relaxing restrictions on pets in the city this week, reviewing changes that would both clear up confusion in its animal control law and remove some bans. Here are the highlights:
Pit Bulls to be allowed
Most notable is council’s desire to lift the restriction on owning Pit Bull Terriers and Pit Bull Terrier mixes. While the breed is still somewhat controversial, it is also loved by its fans, and many residents are excited about the change.
“We shouldn’t ban an entire breed just because they might bite. All dogs might bite. We as responsible dog owners, regardless of the breed, should be responsible to properly train our dogs as well, and to maintain that training,” said resident Karen Hendrickson.
Dog Park would welcome children
When the city’s dog park opened four years ago, it included a ban on children within the space. That ban is set to be lifted, and children under 14 would be able to use the park with the supervision of an adult. (The ‘Dog Spot’ is located at 100 Park Drive, within Simpsonville City Park.)
Exclusion added to tethering law
Confusion around the city’s tethering prohibition would be clarified to apply to unsupervised animals only.
Dogs in downtown
The changes would also welcome dogs downtown with the exception of the Veterans Memorial. This allowance would help residents take advantage of the recent Main Street improvements, and pups could enjoy ‘Dog Days’ at the Ice Cream Station.
“For many people, pets are an important part of the family. These changes to the animal ordinance more accurately reflect the values of our community by contributing to a more dog-friendly, more family-friendly, environment,” said Councilmember Jennifer Hulehan.
The changes to the ordinance will see a second reading before becoming law. That reading will take place on Tuesday, June 12 at 6:30pm, at City Hall. If approved by council, the changes will go into affect this summer.