Montreal’s new animal control regulations focus on prevention

Strangling chains will be banned, a list of potentially dangerous dogs will be public, and pet stores will only be allowed to sell shelter dogs.

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Strangling chains will be banned, a list of potentially dangerous dogs will be made public, and pet stores will only be allowed to sell shelter dogs.


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These are some of the elements of the city’s animal control bylaw, which was passed this week and will gradually come into effect as of Monday. The regulation was passed a few days after a dog from Montreal-North attacked two children on the same day. The Plante administration hopes that the by-law will allow the City to prevent future incidents.

“We give ourselves the power to act before a bite happens,” said Craig Sauvé, associate advisor to the executive committee responsible for drafting the regulations. “In the previous regulation, no action was required until an attack causing bleeding occurred. “

Some of the items will take effect immediately. However, the ban on choke collars, shock collars and clip collars will not begin until 2020. While Mayor Valérie Plante rescinded the 2015 pit bull ban as one of her first acts in the power, his administration took several months to revise the rest of the law. animal control regulations to focus more on animal welfare, education and prevention.


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Sauvé said the city is also adding four inspectors specializing in aggressive animal behavior who he hopes will be in place by October.

Dog and cat owners will be required to register their pets with the city, and pets will be required to wear their tags at all times when in public. Pet dogs, cats and even rabbits will also need to be sterilized from 2020.

From July 2019, pet stores in the city will only be allowed to sell dogs or cats from animal shelters, both in an attempt to reduce the number of puppy mills and as a preventive measure to avoid the ‘mass breeding, Sauvé said, adding that poor reproduction can be the cause of many aggressive tendencies in animals.

The new regulation also states that dogs over 20 kilograms must be tied up when being walked, rather than on a leash. Dogs involved in violent incidents will be taken away by city inspectors who must then judge whether the dog has acted normally or if it is inherently aggressive and should be shot.


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Dogs not falling into any of these categories are considered “at risk” and must be listed on a registry that the city will make public online – an amendment to the bylaw proposed by the city’s opposition. Owners of these dogs must post a sign on their homes warning people of potential danger, and owners of “at risk” dogs must be at least 18 years old and may not have a criminal record. The city may also impose other conditions on these dogs, Sauvé said, such as requiring them to wear a muzzle.

Sauvé said anyone who sees a dangerous dog should call the city on 311. If there is an emergency involving a dog or an attack, people should call 911.

Also this week, city council unanimously voted to ban horse-drawn carriages in Montreal, known as horse-drawn carriages, effective January 1, 2020. Sauvé said the city hopes to rely on help from animal shelters to give horses a good home after retirement.

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