There’s a new mayor in Montreal, and animal activists are cheering her on as she works to fulfill campaign promises to repeal a controversial ban on pit-bull and pit-bull type dogs.
It’s been a source of controversy in Montreal, Canada for quite some time. A bylaw passed in the city in 2016 forced many Montreal residents to move to the suburbs. The bylaw was pushed and passed by then-mayor Denis Coderre, and made it illegal to own pit bulls or pit-bull ‘type’ dogs in the city.
But Montreal’s new mayor, Mayor Valerie Plante, campaigned on a platform that promised to repeal that ban, and now says she is making the moves to hold that promise true.
Craig Suave is a city councilor and says that they will consult with the SPCA, dog owners, veterinarians and scientists about a new bylaw, and that they are planning to do it immediately. Suave also said that Coderre’s bylaw simply was based on bad science that made people pet owners feel like criminals who were holding contraband.
Plante’s administration wants their new bylaws on ones that currently exist in Calgary, and opposes the breed-specific legislation, particularly anti-pit bull legislation, because it is not scientifically backed. Their party looked at studies and talked to experts about the validity of legislation like Coderre’s
Suave says that the bylaw they plan to replace Coderre’s with will be more humane, and will focus on educating pet owners to ensure dogs are brought up humanely and with proper training. He believes that better owners will help reduce dog bites, and this has been shown to be the case in Calgary. Calgary has a good success rate with such a bylaw, and is safer for both humans and dogs of all breeds.
Sophie Gallard is an SPCA lawyer and said that she’s glad there will be fast action, as she believes it was clear (based on Coderre’s loss) that a majority of Montreal’s population was not satisfied with Coderre’s decisions and bylaw, which still remains in effect until a new bylaw is in place.
Gaillard believes that is just a matter of time, though, because she knows that this is a priority for Projet Montreal and the mayor, and that’s a win for all animals everywhere.
Lori Ennis is a wife, mama and friend to all animals. A self-confessed “Hot Mess,” she lives wherever the Marine Corps takes her husband. Currently, that’s Maryland with her very spoiled Labrador Retriever-mix rescue pups and a ton of saltwater fish just tanking around. Lori’s family has fostered dogs for years, mostly Golden Retrievers, and knows no home is complete without an animal buddy (or seven)!