The City of Duncan’s mayor and council voted to pass a new animal regulation bylaw on Monday that heralds a new, more humane era for the community. The bylaw is based on recommendations from the BC SPCA, Coastal Animal Services, and the city’s bylaw enforcement officer.
The bylaw update embodies the City of Duncan’s vision of being one of the most liveable small towns in Canada. Notable bylaw changes include:
- A limit on the number of companion animals that can be kept on a single lot;
- A section related to prohibited animals;
- A section on animal welfare which includes provisions related to: animal cruelty, basic animal care requirements, outdoor shelter requirements, sanitation requirements, tying of animals, transporting animals in motor vehicles, and exercising dogs from a motor vehicle or bicycle;
- Guidelines for animals in public places;
- A section related to identification for the keeping of cats;
- Prohibitions on feeding wildlife; and
- Additional requirements for owners of aggressive dogs.
The city’s mayor, Phil Kent, applauds the changes.
“The new bylaw will enhance the well-being of animals in our City and we are especially pleased with the new regulations related to banning the tethering of animals outdoors for long periods of time and keeping animals confined in enclosures (including motor vehicle) without adequate ventilation to prevent the animal from suffering from distress,” he says.
“It is also a great opportunity for bylaw enforcement officers to educate the public if they see animals living in less than ideal conditions and as a tool when dealing with animal neglect.”
The BC SPCA is encouraged to see municipalities implementing bylaws that encourage responsible animal care and guardianship. Erika Paul, Senior Animal Protection and Outreach Officer, has worked in the Cowichan Valley for more than 10 years and is pleased with the update. She serves both as an animal cruelty investigator and bylaw expert, and continues to meet with municipalities on Vancouver Island.
“These changes will improve the lives of animals living in Duncan,” she says. “We are looking forward to seeing this positive movement towards humane communities spread through the Cowichan Valley.”
The updated bylaw goes into effect immediately can be accessed through the city’s website, at duncan.ca.
The British Columbia Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is a not-for-profit organization reliant on public donations. Our mission is to protect and enhance the quality of life for domestic, farm and wild animals in B.C.