MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - A bill introduced in January in the South Carolina State House of Representatives would require pit bull owners to register and microchip their dogs if they aren’t spayed or neutered.
If the bill were to become law, pit bull owners who don’t sterilize and microchip their dogs would be forced to register the dogs and pay a $500 fee.
If they failed to register the dogs, they would face a misdemeanor and a fine of $1,000, up to a year in prison or both.
The bill defines a pit bull as “a dog that is an American pit bull terrier, American Staffordshire terrier, Staffordshire bull terrier, a dog displaying the physical traits of one or more of the above breeds, or a dog exhibiting the distinguishing characteristics that conform to the standards established by the American Kennel Club for any of the above breeds.”
Katie Sculac, the administrative director at All 4 Paws Animal Rescue in Pawleys Island says she is in support of the bill, but she wishes it would encourage more than just pit bulls to get sterilized.
Sculac says there’s a major overcrowding problem among pit bulls in not just All 4 Paws, but most shelters in the nation.
“There’s pit bull, pit bull mixes daily that are found as strays, people are surrendering,” she said.
She says the shelter the bill times well with one of the shelter’s objectives of the year.
“That’s one of All 4 Paws’ 2019 goals is to focus more on spaying and neutering because that’s the problem,” she said. “That’s the issue.”
The bill is currently in the Committee on Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs.