The City of Armstrong is taking steps to add clarity and definitions to its dog control bylaw. (File photo)

The City of Armstrong is taking steps to add clarity and definitions to its dog control bylaw. (File photo)

Okanagan city unleashing revamped dog control bylaw

Changes to Armstrong bylaw will add and clarify definitions around ‘dangerous and aggressive’ dogs

The City of Armstrong’s dog control bylaw is in the process of adding more bark.

Council gave unanimous three readings to proposed changes to the bylaw that take steps to add and clarify definitions and interpretations, expand the authority of representation and clarify the responsibilities and actions of the city, its chief bylaw officer and dog control officer.

“The proposed bylaw focuses on clarifying and defining the behaviors of a dog as aggressive, vicious or dangerous,” said Warren Smith, City of Armstrong community services manager. “The proposed bylaw outlines specific types of injuries and solidifies the designating of a dog based on facts, records, authority, and the bylaws definitions as outlined within the Community Charter.

“Based on these definitions the bylaw clearly provides steps in managing violations through a mitigation and an authorization approach.”

Smith said while the city has had incidents and reports of aggressive and dangerous dogs, the proposed changes stem from a case in Vancouver.

After a dog attacked a person in Stanley Park in September 2017, the City of Vancouver’s dog control officers deemed the dog dangerous and seized it. The dog had a history of being an aggressive dog with incidents on record of being a danger to the public, and was slated to be put down based on its history, temperament, behaviour, lack of rehabilitation prospects and the city’s dog control bylaw.

The dog was euthanized after a three-year legal battle involving Provincial and Supreme courts.

“Staff and legal council have recommended our dog control bylaw be updated,” said Smith. “Based on the interest of public safety, the series of court challenges from the Vancouver case and the need to strengthen our current dog regulation and impounding bylaw.”

Council is expected to pass the bylaw at Monday’s regular meeting, March 22.

READ MORE: City defends lack of enforcement in dog dispute

READ MORE: Affordable housing parkland rezoning done legally: City of Armstrong



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

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