Bylaw enforcement is complaint-driven, so if you see a problem, you need to tell the Town of Lake Cowichan so they can get the BC SPCA on the job. (Submitted)

Lake Cowichan council adds bite to animal control bylaw

Cruelty concerns encourage Lake Cowichan council to give its animal control bylaw sharper teeth

Lake Cowichan councillors, concerned that the town’s animal control bylaw may not have enough teeth, has added new wording to address the subject of cruelty to animals with an entirely new section in the bylaw.

It includes a section that says:

“No person shall keep any animal within the Town unless it is provided with:

• clean potable drinking water at all times and suitable food of sufficient quantity and quality to allow for normal growth and the maintenance of normal body weight;

• food and water receptacles kept clean and disinfected and located so as to avoid contamination by excreta;

• the opportunity for periodic exercise sufficiently to maintain good health; and

• necessary veterinary medical care when the animal exhibits signs of pain or suffering.”

In addition, “No person shall keep any animal within the Town unless the animal is provided with outside shelter:• to ensure protection from heat, cold and wet that is appropriate to the animal’s weight and type of coat. Such shelters must provide sufficient space to allow any animal the ability to turn about freely and to easily stand, sit and lie in a normal position; and that the shelter be at least 12 times the length of the animal and at least the animal’s length in width, and at least as high as the animal’s height measured from the floor to ceiling.”Coun. Carolyne Austin had raised the question of including the new wording because she had been asked about it during her ‘A Councillor is In’ open house days. Mayor Rod Peters, contacted April 11, said it was a matter of inserting a new section into the existing bylaw: a straightforward task for council.

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