The BC SPCA applauds Vernon City Council for approving an amendment to the city’s bylaws that covers basic standards of care and appropriate housing conditions for animals. “We’re so pleased on behalf of animals in our community to see these changes be approved,” says SPCA Vernon & District branch manager Chelsea Taylor.
In the updated animal regulation and animal pound bylaw, pet guardians can be fined if they fail to provide clean water and shelter, sufficient food, periodic exercise, and veterinary care when the animal displays signs of suffering or illness. Under the new regulations, no owner will be allowed to confine their animal in a space, such as a car, without sufficient shade and ventilation. Owners will not be allowed to leave an animal outside or confined in cold weather or in the rain without adequate precautions to protect the animal from the elements.
Owners cannot abandon an animal and dogs cannot be left tethered unattended for more than four hours in a 24-hour period. According to the bylaw, the tethering system must allow the dog to have adequate freedom of movement with a minimum of a three-meter radius and a minimum of one and a half meters from any property line.
“Having bylaws in place that address animal welfare means that animal abusers face real penalties and provides additional support for cruelty investigations,” says SPCA manager, policy and companion animals Amy Morris.
The SPCA requested an update to the city’s bylaws after it conducted a review of municipal animal bylaws in B.C., which revealed that Vernon lacked regulations regarding standards of care and housing for animals.