JULY 31 LETTER: Work on the local animal control bylaw now

It has been four months since the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary’s (RDKB) new “omnibus” bylaw regarding animal control.

Editor:

It has been four months since the public meeting which mainly concerned the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary’s (RDKB) new “omnibus” bylaw covering many aspects of domestic animal and pet husbandry.

It mostly dealt with dogs and the dog pound; cats were not mentioned. The reason for combining several separate bylaws was never explained. It produced a lengthy document, not easily understood, containing many contentious issues – unreasonable fines; euthanizing animals after brief periods of time; defining vicious dogs purely by breed and unrestricted access to private property.

It did not touch on every-day and routine aspects of breeding, boarding kennels, grooming, training, the adoption of “orphaned” animals, or any provision for working dogs.

At a recent Grand Forks city council meeting, Mayor Brian Taylor mentioned in an informal comment that the ‘dog bylaw’ is still in a state of flux and that, perhaps, the city should start writing its own.

Grand Forks is an industrial, urban area; RDKB Area D is a generally an unimproved, rural area.

It is highly likely that one bylaw will not fit both situations. Area C has already dealt with itself; as have Areas A and B, Trail and Rossland (as far as can be determined).

At the March public meeting, there was unanimous support for an organized pet “industry,” including licensed boarding kennels and breeding facilities.  Senior citizens and young families tend to have more pets; we need a thriving industry to support this necessary aspect of modern life.  Let’s get to work …

Nigel James, Grand Forks

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