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Saturday, September 14, 2013

California's Pet Limitation Laws / Twinkie's Pack is in TROUBLE


Intro: For those of you reading this blog for the past few years, I am Twinkie's M.  I usually let Twinkie do the talking here, but current events dictate that the human takes over. Please share this post or excerpts it on Twitter, FaceBook, your blogs... any place you are willing to, as much and as often as you can. My pack and family are not the only ones dealing with this issue. It is each animal lover's duty to see to it that everyone finds a loving home, so you all see the irony in finding that home and losing it solely based on overgeneralization of ordinances regulating the number of pets. 
* * *
I am reaching out to anybody who may be able to help me either directly or by sharing useful information, regarding the 3-dog per household law in the State of California.

I live in La Canada, Flintridge--The Suburbs. Through the years, I have rescued many animals: squirrels, dogs, cats... birds, any living creature that comes my way. I have 3 registered dogs with the Pasadena Humane Society but I also have another 4 that are not--not because I wanted to cheat the city of any money, but because I can only legally own 3. A dog-hating neighbor has been on my case for over a year. He initially tried to prove that my dogs were excessive barkers, but he couldn't, since that is not the case at all. He contacted the Humane Society, bothered the sheriff's station, but he was unable to prove his case. I am very sensitive to being a good neighbor. My family and pets do not cause noise disturbances. I pick up after my dogs. I make sure that they are in their rooms (I split them up in 3 groups, inside the house) between the hours of 9pm and 8am. I also live on 7/8 of an acre, in a 3,500 square foot home, on horse property. 

A list of  all seven dogs based on size

1. Twinkie: 7-9 year old Chihuahua mix. The ruler of the pack. She's got 3 working legs, has frequent strokes... weighs 4 lbs. She was thrown out of a moving car, according to the rescue organization that passed her on to me to help her cross the rainbow bridge almost six years ago.

2. Frankie: she's about 4 years old. She's a chi mix too. Very timid. Took her a few years to get used to everyone. She was passed out from one person to another during a horse show I was observing. I took her home with me.

3. Pedro: Another Chi mix. He's 3 years old, his second home told me. He was being sold for $50 outside a thrift store. His second home couldn't keep him because he was so unruly. It took two years, but he's a really good boy now, and he "helped me raise the two danes". He is very attached to them. 

4. Linguini: She's a dalmatian mix, about 60 lbs. I adopted her from the Pasadena Humane Sociaty 16 gears ago. This has been her only home since. She's got incontinence, major arthritis, is partially deaf, but she's also a really happy girl who enjoys every meal.

5. Rocket: Another mix, part Chow maybe. He came with my partner when we moved in together. He is about 10. He has a reputation of being an aggressive dog. He immediately adjusted to my pack and hasn't caused any problems. He is a happy senior citizen who plays well with all the dogs, and even the cats.

6. Sasha: Great dane. She weights about 130lbs. She was "given" to me when I went to get her littermate, Ziggy. She was and still is quite the handful. She's hyper and unruly. That's why her family wanted to get rid of her.

7. Ziggy: Great dane. 150lbs. I admit, I always wanted a great dane and when I saw his photo on Craig's list, my heart leapt. I was impulsive for sure. A few months after bringing him home, he was diagnosed with Wobbler's. My heart broke, but I got a CareCredit card and with it, I was able to afford the best care for him. A year after his diagnosis, he is healthier than ever. He is able to run and play with the other dogs, his pack. 

As a group, this is one weird mix, but it's one that has worked well for everyone for years. All the dogs get to play and run in our huge yard. They have toys, food, water, and most of all they have each other. They are loved and get plenty of attention from their three humans. That's why we've never ran into any trouble before this neighbor. Our property is so large, that we actually have six adjoining ones; yet nobody but one person has ever complained.  

I look forward to reading your comments, but please, do not offer to take anybody in yet. Some wonderful people have, but my family and I are not ready for that.

Please help me keep them all in their existing home. 

Thank you


♥♥ The OP Pack ♥♥ said...

Heartbreaking. Wish we had some good advice, but all we have is love and hope for the best. We have a four dog limit here with a special city-approved permit. Your home is an example of why the three dog rule is not fair. What would have happened to your poor pups if they hadn't found you? Your post makes us very sad. We hope something can be done to help you. Hugs.

Taffy said...

I'm so sad to read this. I sure hope that your pups get to stay with you. I know how much you love and care for them. I wish there was something I could do to help you. I am also glad to see you are still blogging! Sending love and hugs to you,
Taffy (and Twix's) Mom

H. Quinn Gregory said...

I wish I had more advise to offer, but I don't know California laws. The only thing I could even think might work would be looking into filing for animal rescue status, or rescue license (or even animal sanctuary) with the local government.
In Georgia, there are city animal limits too, but the local government usually only enforces them when there have been multiple complaints for multiple neighbors. I wish I could be more of a help, and I am hoping for the best for you.

kks said...

sad about a kennel license? don't know the laws in CA.
i know of people that rotate their pets in their yard, as not to get "busted"...
so sorry you have to go through this...and to have a crazy neighbor that has it out for you is even worse....
we all want to live in peace....
good luck.

CreekHiker / HollysFolly said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kari in Alaska said...

Can you get a kennel license?

Stop on by for a visit

acd6pack said...

Hi there - I know EXACTLY how you feel. We had the same issue. Where we lived there was a two dog limit. It didn't matter if they were fosters or not, two total. For six years, we lived happily with foster dogs in and out as our pack grew to seven. Two blind (from birth), one blind and mostly deaf, one deaf and three "normal" ones. Then came the knock on the door. Long story short - $180 fine and two weeks "to get rid of them". Not an option. Luckily for us, we had somewhere to go. Almost 40 acres with a house and barn. Only a couple of problems, the house was rented to fabulous tenants and the property was almost 2000km away. I quit my job and drove away. The dogs and I are currently living in part of a barn. We have very little but we have each other. We're very happy.

Good luck to you and if you have a minute, check us out: We have an email address there too. Thanks to Melon of Life As A Piggie for telling us about you. We'll keep you in our thoughts and prayers and for sure will be watching your blog.

Anonymous said...

I'm not familiar with California law, but the suggestions above seem pretty good. Try for a kennel license, and if your partner can register three of them under his name, that could skirt around the issue. Depending on the date the legislation went into effect, you may be able to be grandfathered in. In the meantime, maybe you can start asking your neighborhoods for good references to start to counteract the one bad neighbor, to show that you are a responsible dog owner (versus a hoarder that the law is likely intended to prevent). Good luck!

Baby Rocket Dog and Hootie said...

This is yet another example of government running out of control. Our hearts are so sad to read about this. We've been fans & friends of Twinkie for ages and know what caring and responsible pet owners you are. Hoping you find a solution that won't break up the pack.
Smooches from pooches,
BabyRocketDog & Hootie

ps-mama will post on FB.

Nadine, Chewy and Lilibell said...

Oh this is horrible! What is the update since you wrote this? I don't have any advice for you, but I do hope that you find a solution to your problem and are able to keep your pack intact. You have some very special members of it that only you can give love and care too.

Some people really have nothing better to do in their own lives and feel the need to make others miserable. I say boo to them and get a life!

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