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Family can keep dog

July 7th, 2005, 08:12 AM
This was on CBC New Brunswick.

Court says family can keep dog
Last updated Jul 6 2005 09:12 AM ADT
CBC News
A couple in Hartland have won their long-running battle to keep their pet Rottweiler, in spite of a municipal bylaw which bans people from owning the dogs.

The town took Jon and Sherry Kroom to court Tuesday to force them to comply with the four-year-old bylaw.

FROM SEPT. 18, 2003: Family and town square off over dog bylaw
But the Kroons and their beloved dog Sarah managed to slip through some fuzzy language in the bylaw and won the case.

Judge Paulette Garnett told the court that she had once been a high school grammar teacher, and she said grammar was what this case came down to.

The law stipulates that it is illegal for town residents to become owners of Rottweilers and pit bulls because they pose a threat to public safety.

Garnett said "become" was the key word.

The Kroons owned their dog before moving to Hartland two years ago. As such, Garnett ruled they didn't "become" owners, but already were owners, when they became Hartland residents.

With that in mind, she said the wording of the bylaw didn't apply to the family and their dog, and dismissed the case

In the end, what was expected to be a two-day trial lasted only an hour.

The Kroons and the lawyers for both sides refused to comment on the judge's ruling.

The town hasn't said if it will appeal.