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South Carolina County Mulls Pet Limits, Reptile Ban

Several species of python, the anaconda, venomous reptiles, and large lizards would fall victim to the ban.

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Richland County, S.C., may limit the number of pet cats and dogs in non-rural, unincorporated areas of the county to three and ban the possession and sales of certain snakes and lizards.

The Richland County Council Development and Services Committee has scheduled a hearing for Tuesday, Dec. 20 on proposed ordinance changes, the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC) reported today.


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The proposal defines a pet as “any domestic dog and/or domestic cat” and would not limit the number of pets per household in areas of the county zoned rural. The ordinance also bans ownership and/or sale of several species of python, the anaconda, venomous reptiles, and lizards more than two feet long.

The proposal has no exemption for breeders, according to the Bambi Nicole Osborne,  PIJAC’s director of government affairs.
If adopted by the committee, the proposal could go to the county council for public hearings and action as early as January. If passed by the council, the proposal calls for a six-month period from the adoption date to allow compliance. PIJAC says it opposes pet limits because “limiting the number of pets per household provides no measure of the level or quality of care such animals receive.” 

PIJAC encouraged interested parties to contact committee members with concerns and questions prior to the Dec. 20 hearing as the proposal is still being amended.