BEIJING, May 17 (Xinhuanet) -- Now that keeping pets has become popular in Shanghai, pampered pedigree dogs are becoming a regular sight on the streets. The boom in the number of dogs and cats has increased the number of strays as more pets are abandoned. But from May 15th, things should change. The implementation of the "one dog under one roof policy" lowers the price for dog ownership but limits the number of dogs within one family in an effort to crackdown on unregistered animals. To what extent will the new quota save the day.
Niuniu has been in Ms. Guo's family for more than a year.
Despite the closeness to her master, she is still not registered as a family member.
Yet, things are about to change.
Ms. Guo, one dog owner said "Under the new law, the registration fee for where we live has dropped from 2 thousand yuan to 5 hundred. Much more affordable than before, so I am considering getting registered."
But not everyone is happy.
Under the new regulation, owners whose dogs are not registered with the authorities will have to give them away.
Those who already have more than one licensed dog will be able to keep them.
But for those who have more than one unregistered dog, only one registration will be accepted.
This has sparked opposition from pet lovers.
Guo Liying one dog owner said "I have three unregistered dogs. They have been with me for five years. They are family to me, I can't just give one of them up."
Some dog owners are also unsatisfied when balancing up the pros and cons.
Fan Wenjie, one dog owner said "As far as I know, the fee covers three parts - namely epidemic prevention, the chip, and management -- according to the authorities. I hope that since we will have to pay a management fee, they will actually manage the situation well."
Shanghai's pet dog population is estimated at 800,000 although only a quarter of that number are registered.
Hefty registration fees of up to 2,000 yuan were blamed for the proliferation of unregistered dogs in Shanghai in the past.
Observers say as the new policy comes into force, some pet owners will have no second thoughts about criticizing the government.
But policy aside, pet owners should do their bit to correct the misbehaviour of their loved pets.