West Hollywood proposes groundbreaking pet law

BY Advocate.com Editors

January 23 2003 1:00 AM ET

The city council of predominantly gay West Hollywood, Calif., unanimously adopted a resolution Tuesday night condemning the declawing of cats and ordered the city attorney to draft an ordinance calling for a full-fledged ban.

Councilman John Duran, who introduced the resolution, said it requires the city attorney to return to the council within four weeks with a draft of the proposed ban, which would affect all three veterinary clinics in the city of 35,000.

Residents could still have their cats declawed at clinics outside the city, which is located within the city of Los Angeles and adjacent to Beverly Hills. "We're very cognizant of that fact, but with West Hollywood making this statement, we're hoping it will cause other cities to think," said Jennifer Conrad, a veterinarian who founded Santa Monica-based Paw Project.

West Hollywood, which has long prided itself on its groundbreaking actions, could set the standard for other cities to follow, Duran said. The city already has designated people as "pet guardians," extended health coverage to gay partners of city employees, and declared itself in favor of abortion rights.

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