Dog owners are required to obtain a licence annually, on or by January 31st, for any dog over the age of 6 months.
The licence fee is established by Council. Owners are required to produce evidence that the animal has been immunized against rabies, and in order to qualify for the reduced fee for a neutered animal, the owner must produce a veterinary certificate to show that the dog has been neutered. No dog may be licensed unless the owner produces at the time of application for a licence, a valid certificate of a veterinary surgeon that the dog has been immunized against rabies.
With regard to unlicensed dogs, the Animal Control Officer may be required to lay charges against a dog owner by way of a summons, if the dog remains unlicensed after January 31st, or issue a Provincial Offence ticket.
2013 DOG TAGS
2013 Dog Tags are now available. All dog owners are required to purchase a licence for their dog or dogs for 2013. City tags are SILVER in colour.
2013 DOG LICENCE FEES
Until March 31, 2013
Spayed or Neutered $30.00
Un-spayed or Un-neutered $65.00
After March 31, 2013
Spayed or Neutered $55.00
Un-spayed or Un-neutered $90.00
Dog tags can be purchased at Sarnia and area veterinarians until March 31 of each year. April 1st all tags can only be purchased at the Humane Society at 131 Exmouth Street and the City Clerk’s Office.
No owner of a dog shall permit the dog to foul with excrement any public highway or any other premises other than the premises of the owner of the dog, unless the owner of the dog forthwith removes the excrement. The owner of a dog has the right to use and enjoy property within the City in common with others, such property shall not be considered the premises of the owner.
When a complaint is received about persistent barking, the complainant is encouraged to communicate with the owner of the dog. If that fails to produce satisfactory results, the Animal Control Officer will speak to the owner of the dog and if that does not improve the situation, the Animal Control Officer will issue a Provincial Offence ticket to the owner of the barking dog or assist the complainant to lay charges, which will necessitate a court appearance by the complainant.
If the situation has already become a dispute between the neighbours, the Animal Control Officers will speak to the owner of the dog and if this does not resolve the situation, will issue a Provincial Offence ticket or assist the complainant to lay charges.
*Please Note: "Dealing with Barking Dogs" is a handout for help with this problem. It has been supplied to us by Blue Cross Animal Hospital and copies may be obtained at the City Clerk’s Office.
RUNNING AT LARGE
Dogs running at large contrary to By-Law #133 of 2009 may result in the owner being charged and/or the dog being impounded.
When a person or domestic animal receives a dog bite, the Animal Control Officer will assist the County of Lambton Community Health Services Department with licence checks, rabies vaccinations checks and removal of the animal to the pound for quarantine purposes.
If the Animal Control Officer suspects an animal is being mistreated, they will inform the Humane Society, and assist with investigations.
For the protection of the public, the Animal Control Officers will attempt to remove a vicious dog, often with the help of a Police Officer. If the Animal Control Officer is satisfied that a dog has bitten a person or a domestic animal, the Officer will notify the dog’s owner, in writing, advising that the dog will be required to be muzzled at all times when it is in or at any place other than the premises of the owner.
If the Animal Control Officer is satisfied on the balance of probabilities that a dog has bitten a person or a domestic animal, the Officer shall notify the dog’s owner in writing that it shall thereafter be required to be muzzled at all times when it is in or at any place other than the premises of the owner. The owner of a muzzled dog may request in writing to the City Clerk to exempt the muzzling requirement.
MUZZLE ORDER - APPEAL PROCEDURE
Upon receipt of an appeal of a muzzle order, the City Clerk will:
1. Contact biting victim or guardian/parent, and attempt to obtain a written
statement as to the circumstances of the attack and impact on victim.
2. Get report from Animal Control Officer.
3. Make decision based on the following factors:
- viciousness of attack/biting, and why the attack/biting took place, if known.
for example - did the bite occur by accident during play, after teasing, to
protect owner or property, etc..
- attitude of owner of muzzled dog and steps taken to ensure that another
similar incident does not occur.
- has the dog been involved in other attack/biting incidents.
LOST AND/OR STOLEN DOGS
In the case of a lost or stolen dog, the Animal Control Officer will assist the owner in locating the animal, whenever possible.
Stray and/or injured animals will be picked up and taken to the Humane Society or Veterinarian, as necessary. In the case of an injured animal, the Animal Control Officer may be required to assist the Vet.
In the case of a known owner of a "dog at large" the Animal Control Officer will contact the owner and in the case of repeat offenders will issue a Provincial Offence ticket. In the case of a first offence, the Animal Control Officer can use his/her discretion, and give the owner of the dog a warning and inform him/her of their responsibility under the by-law prohibiting an owner of a dog from allowing his animal to "run at large". (This also applies to dogs allowed to run free in City parks, etc.) Where there is no known owner, the animal will be taken to the Humane Society and boarded there for a minimum of 4 days. If the animal is not claimed within this period of time, the Humane Society will place it for adoption or dispose of it.
MEDICAL ATTENTION FOR STRAY DOGS
The City currently has an arrangement with Blue Cross Veterinary Clinic to provide medical treatment to injured stray animals. The clinic provides coverage after hours, as well as during normal working hours and the Animal Control Officer generally brings the animal to the clinic or contacts the veterinarian.
Frequently citizens will bring stray animals into the clinic, including wildlife, however, the city will not cover the cost of any injured animal brought in by the public.
If the stray has no identification, does not appear to be adoptable or, in the case of cats, looks like it might be feral, then there will be no treatment at the City’s expense. Also, the City does not cover the cost of medical treatment to wildlife.
When a complainant wants to pursue court action, the Animal Control Officer will deliver the "Summons Information Package" which consists of witness forms, excerpt of the violated by-law, and appropriate guidelines. The Animal Control Officer will also inform the dog owner of the complaint lodged against him.
Animal Control Officers will deliver summonses, with the help of a Police Officer, if necessary, and appear in court during deliberations.
With regard to unlicensed dogs, the Animal Control Officer may be required to lay charges against a dog owner by way of a Provincial Offence ticket, if the dog remains unlicensed after January 31st, or issue a summons.