The City of Weyburn is looking at making changes to the Cat & Dog Bylaw. A number of amendments were presented to Weyburn City Council during the meeting this past Monday, and they were given a first reading, with the second and third readings to come at a later meeting.
The recommended changes were submitted by the Weyburn Police Commission after meetings earlier in the year. From there, the recommended changes were reviewed with Police Chief Jamie Blunden and the City’s Bylaw Officer, and the recommended changes were submitted.
Part of the amendment includes some changes to the wording of the bylaw when it comes to the number of dogs and cats permitted. The existing wording states “no person shall possess or harbour more than three dogs or three cats or a combination of both for a total of three, over the age of six months.”
“When we looking at that, I mean, if you had 10 people living in your house, that would give you 30 aminals to be able to live in there, so we thought that we should limit that to a household,” Blunden explained of the recommended change.
The next recommended change comes to dangerous dogs and cats. The section of the bylaw, as it is currently worded, only applies to people.
“It didn’t refer to any other domestic animal, so if you had a dangerous animal out there like a dog, and it was attacking or trying to bite a person, we can deal with it, but we couldn’t deal with a dog that was out there trying to bite a domesticated animal,” Blunden said. He used the example of a larger dog trying to attack a smaller dog, noting it wasn’t addressed in the bylaw. The recommended change now gives the police authority when it comes to these situations.
The third recommended change includes how barking dogs are handled if the owner is not at home.
“Maybe the owners went away to the lake for the weekend, 3:00 in the morning, we’ve got a dog barking and barking and barking, and members go down there, there’s no one around. That dog is going to continue to bark, probably for the weekend,” Blunden gave as an example. “The changes that we recommended was that we have the ability to seize that dog, to prevent the continuation of that offence, and that way, the owner, when they came back from the lake or wherever they were 24 or 48 hours later, they would be given notice that their dog was at the Humane Society because that is classified as where we hold the animals.”
The owner of the dog would then need to pay the fees to get the dog out, and they would receive any of the bylaw tickets that were issued.
The bylaw will be back before Council for the 2nd and 3rd readings at the next council meeting. If it passes, it will then go into effect right away.
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