Dog ownership bylaw comes under review

Residents have an opportunity to share their thoughts about the new bylaw regulating dog owners within the Regional District of Central Okanagan.

The regional board has given the first two readings to a new Responsible Dog Ownership Bylaw.  Interested residents can provide their comments with the goal of adopting the new bylaw in February.

“The name of the bylaw reflects the responsibility of residents that choose to own a dog.  More often than not it all begins and ends with the owner,” said Bruce Smith, communications officer.

“The changes proposed in the bylaw support and encourage the principles of responsible dog ownership.  This helps not only to ensure public safety, but that non-dog owners and dog owners can equally enjoy our community. All dogs in the Central Okanagan must be licensed, are encouraged to be spayed or neutered, and owners must be in control of their dogs at all times, on or off their property.   This means leashing and controlling their dog in public and controlling their dog when in designated off-leash areas.”

Smith said dog owners must not let their dogs run at large and are responsible for being a good neighbour by picking up after their pet and keeping their dog from becoming a nuisance.

“That’s the main focus of this updated bylaw.  Owners that have that responsible attitude shouldn’t have any problem with this proposal,” he said.

“The Regional Board has directed that those that choose not to do these things should be held accountable through the bylaw, by other dog owners and citizens across the Central Okanagan.”

Residents can attend an information open house Jan. 29 at the RDCO office in Kelowna in order to make their feelings and comments known.

A questionnaire is available at until Feb. 2.


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