Wico. Co. revives committee to protect animal rights

Wico. Co. revives committee to...

WICOMICO CO., Md. - It's been almost one year since Wicomico County authorities rescued more than 300 dogs from deplorable conditions in Eden, Maryland.The suspected puppy mill scandal shook the Delmarva peninsula and  spurred immediate action and charity from all over.

The Wicomico County Humane Society says  many of the dogs have been adopted, but as of Thursday afternoon about 2 dozen are still at local shelters, some of them are still recovering.

Knowing the pain and stress this one puppy mill operation caused, the Wicomico County Council is reviving a decade old committee to prevent this from happening again.

"There is a huge concern now on animal rights and protecting animals who can't defend themselves of course," says John T. Cannon, the President of the Wicomico County Council.

Cannon tells us the initial committee was established in 2007, back then it's original purpose was to make recommendations and suggest ordinances that would protect residents from dangerous dogs.

"We did so because as a direct result of a child being mauled in the Willards area, and there was a lot of backlash on what is the county going to do," says Cannon.

However, it appears that the roles have been reversed since the 2007 incident. This new committee will be making recommendations in the hopes of protecting animal rights.

"The focus is not going to be just on dogs alone. It is going to be all animals that need those type of protections," says Cannon.

Cannon says reinstating the committee is still in it's early stages. He says the county will be seeking input from the Wicomico County Humane society on issues that need to be addressed.

Aaron Balsamo, the Executive Director from the Wicomico County Humane Society says  one of those issues is tightening up breeding laws.

"We are trying to bring that number of dogs from 15 down to 6 or 8, somewhere on that level, and that is also what I have recommended to the county to look at," says Balsamo/

Balsamo  tells us further restricting the number of dogs people can have will require more people to register as breeders.

The Wicomico County Council tell us they are in the process of recruiting members to be a part of this committee, right now they are looking to have 10 members on it.

Anyone interested in participating should contact the Wicomico County Council.

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