Being a Dog Guardian in Shanghai

If you think you're having trouble with your local government, check out this blog posting from The China Analyst. Oh, the joys of being a...


Shanghai dog.jpg

If you think you’re having trouble with your local government, check out this blog posting from The China Analyst.

Oh, the joys of being a dog owner in Shanghai

So, we’re trying to get a license for our new dog. They don’t make this process easy, of course. But why would they? It’s not like our dog’s life depends on it. Oh wait …

Red stamps. You have to get three of them, we think, before they will even consider your license application: from some kind of neighborhood committee, your local police station and then the main district police station. Then you get to pay your 2,000 kuai and hope everything goes smoothly (if you own a German Shepherd, you’re pretty much screwed … so try to lie about the breed).

Problem is the only person at our neighborhood office who knows where they keep red stamp is “sick.” Which puts a halt to the whole process, because the local police station won’t give their seal of approval without the neighborhood one. The timing of this really sucks we are leaving town during Spring Festival and the place where we are keeping the dogs made a point to warn us that if the police choose to raid their kennel while we are gone and the dog doesn’t have a license, there is nothing they can do to stop them from taking the dog away. Even if our dog is really cute. And he is.

And what happens to dogs that are “taken away.” Well, we bet you have a pretty good idea, but just in case, the friendly Shanghai police aren’t shy about discussing it. We made a call to our district police station to get some information on the licensing process, and they made a point to tell us that they are on call 24 hours a day to deal with “nuisance” dogs, “If we receive a complaint and find that the dog is unlicensed, we will kill it.” Mind you he said this after we had told him what neighborhood we lived in. We have stopped letting our dogs hang out on the balcony.

And then, as if we needed another reminder, the Shanghai Daily runs a story that starts like this, “Shanghai discourages people from owning dogs …” Oh, really?

Here’s some more if you are interested:

Since Shanghai has a very big population yet little space, it is not the time for ”a large scale of people to raise dogs”, Wu Zhiming, the director of the bureau, said yesterday at the ongoing session of the Shanghai People’s Congress. He said a study found that there are more than 400,000 dogs in Shanghai.

Dog lovers shall abide to the “one-dog” policy for each household, Wu said. Police will “strictly control” people with more than one dog in their household, the raising of big dogs and the illegal sale of unlicensed dogs, Wu said when responding to a proposal by a local congress member.

Miao Lin, a doctor from Putuo District, proposed to modify the current Dog Management Regulations into Pets Management Regulations with 12 changes.

The proposed changes include embedding chips with owners’ information into the dogs to control the number of strays and severely punish pet owners who unleash their dogs or bring them to public areas.

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