The well-being of animals is always top of mind in our neighbourhoods. It’s important that residents understand the City’s Animal Care and Control By-Law. It sets standards of care to help protect animals and ensure they are cared for by their owners.
When the snow falls and frigid temperatures set in, don’t forget about your furry animal friends. Pets cannot be left outdoors during extreme weather, except for brief walks or washroom breaks. The exception is for animals that have access to adequate shelter. Some breeds can live outside during winter as long as they have proper shelter. Do your research – an Alaskan Malamute may be outside in a doghouse while a Whippet can’t handle the cold.
Adequate Shelter – Doghouses
If your dog or a neighbour’s dog lives outside, it must have access to a doghouse that is large enough for the dog to stand up, turn around, lie down and stretch out. The walls, floor and ceiling of the shelter must be insulated and interior walls must be covered to prevent the dog from coming into contact with the insulation. The doghouse must be clean with dry bedding such as straw and there must be a door flap during winter months to keep cold winds and snow at bay. And finally, the doghouse must comply with the City’s Zoning By-law.
It’s up to owners to ensure their pet has regular veterinary care including vaccinations to support good health and to attend to any signs of injury or disease.
Pens and Enclosures
Dogs must be kept in an enclosure that is a minimum of 9.3 m2 or 100 ft2. If there is more than one dog, the pen must be increased by 2.8 m2 or 30 ft2. Pets must be taken out of the pen and not tethered for at least four hours at a time within a 24 hour period. Put some thought into your pet’s living conditions as the pens must be clean, sanitary, safe and secure.
Did you know that pets can only be tethered for a total of four hours in a 24 hour period? Tethered pets must be in their owner’s view and have at least 3 m or 9.84 ft. to ensure the dog can travel safely and access shelter and water.