Mapleridge, BC, Canada

Discuss Breed Specific Legislation and local county laws on pit bull ownership.
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heather
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Mapleridge, BC, Canada

Postby heather » Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:54 pm

http://blessthebullys.wordpress.com/201 ... bc-canada/


District of Maple Ridge staff are recommending a new bylaw that singles out pit bulls as “aggressive” and would charge their owners a licensing fee four times that of other breeds. The fee would apply to pit bull terriers, Staffordshire bull terriers, American Staffordshire terriers, American pit bull terriers, or a cross of any of the breeds. According to Bylaws Director Liz Holitzki, pit bulls are being singled out to encourage responsible pet ownership.

While the Bylaws director is pushing for the change, the mayor and some council members have expressed concerns with implementing a breed specific ordinance.

Please send your polite, respectful and informative opposition to BSL to the Maple Ridge city officials listed below. Please include suggestions and viable alternatives, and urge officials to encourage responsible pet ownership through education and by enforcing the laws already in place.



District of Maple Ridge
11995 Haney Place
Maple Ridge, BC Canada V2X 6A9
Tel: 604-463-5221
Fax: 604-467-7329

Mayor Ernie Daykin
edaykin@mapleridge.ca

Councilor Cheryl Ashlie
cashlie@mapleridge.ca

Councilor Corisa Bell
cbell@mapleridge.ca

Councilor Judy Dueck
jdueck@mapleridge.ca

Councilor Al Hogarth
ahogarth@mapleridge.ca

Councilor Bob Masse
rmasse@mapleridge.ca

Councilor Michael Morden
mmorden@mapleridge.ca


Mayor & Council
Tel: 604-463-5221
Fax: 604-466-4308
mayorandcouncil@mapleridge.ca

Proposed Maple Ridge bylaw to single out pit bulls


By Robert Mangelsdorf - Maple Ridge News
Published: July 17, 2012 4:00 PM
Updated: July 17, 2012 4:21 PM

District of Maple Ridge staff are recommending a new dog bylaw that singles out pit bulls as “aggressive” and would charge their owners a licensing fee four times that of other breeds.
The fee would apply to pit bull terriers, Staffordshire bull terriers, American Staffordshire terriers, American pit bull terriers, or a cross of any of the breeds.
Pit bull owners would be required to pay a $200 “aggressive dog” licensing fee annually, and require their dog to be muzzled when off the owner’s property. Pit bulls would also be subject to higher impound fees.
The proposed animal control bylaw was brought to council for discussion Monday morning, and is meant to replace the District’s outdated one, which dates back to 1977.
Maple Ridge bylaws director Liz Holitzki said the singling out of pit bulls is designed to encourage responsible pet ownership. While both the district and the SPCA receive complaints about problem dogs of all breeds, there is significant public concern about pit bulls in particular.
“It’s not unusual to have a total ban, but that’s not the way to go,” Holitzki told council.
However, while many communities have chosen to enact similar bylaws singling out a particular breed, they have had little positive effect, according to Lorie Chortyk, spokesperson for the B.C. SPCA.
“The issue isn’t the breed of dogs, it’s the dog owners who aren’t being responsible,” she said.
The SPCA doesn’t support breed-specific bans or bylaws, because such legislation punishes responsible dog owners instead of encouraging them, and provides a false sense of security for residents.
Among the breeds most often associated with dog bites, Chortyk said golden retrievers and Chihuahuas are the worst offenders.
“Pit bulls are actually way down the list,” she said.
Other breeds are often mistaken for pit bulls, which has unfairly given the breed a bad reputation.
“Any time there’s a stocky short-haired dog that’s involved in a dog bite and runs off, its automatically a pit bull,” said Chortyk. “But that’s not always the case.”
In some jurisdictions in the U.S., dozens of breeds have been banned over the past decades as problem owners move on to different types of dogs.
“But they are still having problems, because their laws don’t deal with the dog owners.”
Any dog with strong jaws and a prey drive needs to be well-managed, but pit bulls aren’t the only breed to fall into that category. Chortyk suggested offering a discount on licenses to dog owners who can prove their dog has successfully passed obedience school would be more effective.
“That way it’s not punitive to responsible dog owners,” she said.
Requiring all male dogs to be neutered would also help to prevent dog bites, as well as keep the dog population under control.
However, Holitzki noted that the SPCA has a different mandate than Maple Ridge bylaws enforcement, and that it was important for the district to act first to protect residents from aggressive dogs to prevent dog attacks.
“We look to protect the residents as opposed to the animal,” Holitzki said. “But certainly we can wait and react when someone gets bit.”
Councillors also expressed trepidation at including breed-specific language in the bylaw.
“It’s a bit discriminatory,” said Coun. Mike Morden. “I’d like to see these dogs dealt with on an individual basis.”
He added that if the licensing fee is made to be exorbitant, owners of aggressive dogs simply won’t register their dogs with the district.
Mayor Ernie Daykin noted it wasn’t large breeds that posed a threat, in his experience.
“As a paperboy, it wasn’t the big dogs that bit me, it was the little ones,” Daykin said. “But they don’t do as much damage.”


http://www.mapleridgenews.com/news/162800096.html

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heather
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Re: Mapleridge, BC, Canada

Postby heather » Sun Sep 09, 2012 8:20 am

In light of recent events in British Columbia, Canada, we don’t want to let this alert for Maple Ridge, BC, Canada (originally posted in July), fall of the radar.


http://blessthebullys.wordpress.com/201 ... bc-canada/

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heather
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Re: Mapleridge, BC, Canada

Postby heather » Tue Sep 25, 2012 8:32 pm

Although initial reports indicated the topic of regulating pit bulls would come before the Maple Ridge council in September, I spoke with the city clerk last week, and was advised its not expected to come up until sometime in October.

Please continue to send your polite, respectful and informtaive letters in opposition to the Maple Ridge officials.


Alerts for Maple Ridge, BC, Canada:

http://blessthebullys.wordpress.com/201 ... bc-canada/

http://blessthebullys.wordpress.com/201 ... bc-canada/




Ridge pit bull owners protest proposed prohibition

By Robert Mangelsdorf - Maple Ridge News
Published: September 21, 2012 4:00 AM
Updated: September 21, 2012 9:40 AM
Janessa Munz is out to prove that pit bulls aren’t scary, once you get to know them.
Munz is organizing a pit bull walk in downtown Maple Ridge on Sunday, Sept. 30, to protest a proposed Maple Ridge bylaw that would single out pit bulls as “aggressive” and would charge their owners a licensing fee four times that of other breeds.
District of Maple Ridge staff recommended the bylaw two months ago, however, the proposal hasn’t yet to come back to council for approval.
Bylaws director Liz Holitzki said the singling out of pit bulls is designed to encourage responsible pet ownership. While both the district and the SPCA receive complaints about problem dogs of all breeds, there is significant public concern about pit bulls in particular.
“It’s not unusual to have a total ban, but that’s not the way to go,” she told council in July.
A woman faces charges after ordering her two pit bulls to attack another woman last month in Toronto, where pit bulls were banned seven years ago.
And parents of two B.C. children who were viciously attacked by pit bills in August have asked the province to ban the breed.
But singling out pit bulls as aggressive isn’t fair, or even accurate, says Munz, who owns a staffordshire terrier named Karma.
“I have a six-month-old, and she chews on the dog’s tail, and it couldn’t care less,” she said.
According to Munz, if more people could meet well-trained pit bulls, there wouldn’t be such anti-pit bull hysteria. To that end, she is organizing a walk through downtown Maple Ridge for pit bull owners and their dogs to help show the public how gentle and safe the dogs are, despite their muscular physique.
“A lot of drug dealers and affiliated type people get pit bulls because they want to instill fear,” she says.
But a breed-specific bylaw targeting pit bulls will mean problem owners will switch to other large breed dogs, such as Rottweilers, German shepherds, or Dobermans.
“It all comes down to the owner.”
Breed specific bylaws like the one Maple Ridge is proposing amounts to racism for dogs, said Munz.
“To judge an entire breed by their appearance is unfair,” she said. “You can’t judge a book by its cover.”
Munz said she would like to have all potential dog owners go through a trial assessment period with a dog to ensure they are responsible owners when buying one from a breeder or pet store, similar to what the SPCA requires when adopting dogs.
Owners of large breeds should also be required to properly train and socialize their dogs, so they don’t pose a threat to others.
“Training can be expensive … but if you are working a nine-to-five job, and can’t be around to properly socialize your dog, you probably shouldn’t have one,” Munz said.
Dr. Adrian Walton, a veterinarian at the Dewdney Animal Hospital, also believes the proposed bylaw misses the mark.
“It’s not the pit bulls and Rottweilers that scare me, it’s the Pomeranians and Chihuahuas,” he said. “They are the dogs that most frequently try to bite me.”
Instead, he favors bylaws that would target intact male dogs of any breed, and require more training for dogs, and their owners.
Often dogs are aggressive for a reason, and it’s not because of their breed.
“If you are finding yourself with an aggressive dog, talk to your vet,” he said. “Maybe it’s got arthritis and in pain. Maybe it’s just one of those dogs that is wired wrong, or the genes that promote the human-animal bond is missing. If your dog is a risk to your family, or your neighbors, consider humane euthanasia.”
• The pitbull bylaw protest dog walk begins at Memorial Peace Park in downtown Maple Ridge at noon on Sunday, Sept. 30.

http://www.mapleridgenews.com/news/170587026.html

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heather
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Re: Mapleridge, BC, Canada

Postby heather » Tue Oct 09, 2012 8:23 am

A workshop has been set to discuss a proposed breed specific ordinance in Maple Ridge, BC, Canada on October 15, 2012. Contact information for city officials can be found at this link:
http://blessthebullys.wordpress.com/201 ... bc-canada/




Owners protest breed-specific bylaw in Maple Ridge


By Robert Mangelsdorf - Maple Ridge News
Published: October 03, 2012 5:00 AM
More than 50 pit bulls, Rottweilers, Dobermans, Dachshunds and even Shih Tzus took to the streets of downtown Maple Ridge with their owners Sunday afternoon to protest a proposed bylaw that would single out certain breeds as aggressive.
Two months ago, District of Maple Ridge staff recommended a bylaw that would single out pit bull breeds, such as Staffordshire terriers and American pit bull terriers, as “aggressive” and charge their owners a $200 licensing fee annually, four times that of other breeds. Pit bulls would also be required to be muzzled when off the owner’s property and would also be subject to higher impound fees.
Local pit bull owner Janessa Munz helped organize the event on Sunday to protest the bylaw, which she feels is unfair to responsible dog owners, and to help improve the public image of the pit bull.
Munz said she understands why some people might be fearful of larger breeds like pit bulls, that large dogs in the hands of a bad owner can be dangerous. But that’s not the fault of the breed, she contends, and breed-specific bylaws do nothing to address the real problem: irresponsible owners.
“Most dog owners are responsible,” she added. “We train our dogs properly, we socialize them, and we nurture them. We feel we shouldn’t be treated the same as irresponsible owners.”
More than 50 dogs took part in the dog-walk around downtown Maple Ridge, without incident.
“We want to be ambassadors for the breed,” Munz said. “All the dogs were well-behaved and got along great. There were no issues and no problems.”
In addition to pit bulls, the owners of other dog breeds came out to lend their support for the oft-maligned breed, and show their opposition to breed-specific bylaws like the one being proposed by District of Maple Ridge staff.
Munz said she surprised at how positive the reaction was from the public.
“We had people honking in support, people were coming out of their businesses to greet us and shake our hands,” she said.
Bylaws director Liz Holitzki said singling out pit bulls is designed to encourage responsible pet ownership. While both the district and SPCA receive complaints about problem dogs of all breeds, there is significant public concern about pit bulls, in particular.
Parents of two B.C. children who were viciously attacked by pit bills in August have asked the province to ban the breed.
However, Holitzki told councillors in July she felt an outright ban was unnecessary.
The bylaw comes back before Maple Ridge council for discussion at a workshop meeting on Oct. 15, and Munz hopes councillors will have a change of heart and steer clear of any breed-specific language.

http://www.mapleridgenews.com/news/172370101.html

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heather
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Re: Mapleridge, BC, Canada

Postby heather » Wed Oct 17, 2012 8:58 am

BSL on the city council workshop agenda tomorrow in Maple Ridge, BC, Canada.

http://blessthebullys.wordpress.com/201 ... op-agenda/

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MarMar
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Re: Mapleridge, BC, Canada

Postby MarMar » Wed Oct 17, 2012 4:49 pm

I've heard that they did NOT pass the BSL but still waiting on official confirmation.

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heather
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Re: Mapleridge, BC, Canada

Postby heather » Fri Oct 19, 2012 9:06 pm

BSL moving forward in Maple Ridge, BC, Canada

http://blessthebullys.wordpress.com/201 ... bc-canada/

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MarMar
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Re: Mapleridge, BC, Canada

Postby MarMar » Sat Oct 20, 2012 10:42 pm

From people who attended the meeting, it was not a go. I'm not sure why various websites are reporting it did pass. I have asked for clarification.

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Re: Mapleridge, BC, Canada

Postby Thalia_Cache » Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:06 pm

I'm really glad this did not pass. How ridiculous! $200 per dog? It's outrageous that good dogs and responsible owners are continually punished in this type of way, BUT when we have people dragging dogs behind cars, beating them or giving them chemical burns, they are let off with a slap on the wrist.


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