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Melinda March 16th, 2010 02:01 PM

I wish Ontario would adopt this law

Claws come out in Calgary's cat licensing bylaw
Pet owners face $250 fines for unlicensed felines The full strength of Calgary's animal control bylaw came into effect Tuesday with heavy fines being enforced for people who do not license their cats, or allow them to run around on other people's property.

Cat licences have been mandatory since Jan. 1, 2007, but city officials said they gave residents a grace period on fines to encourage pet owners to register their cats.

"We promised the public that [in] the first year of cat licensing we wouldn't be laying any charges. It was going to be sort of a soft approach," said Bill Bruce, the city's director of animal and bylaw services.

With 2008 starting, "if you have an unlicensed cat, you'll get the ticket the same as an unlicensed dog would," he added.

Dogs are already licensed in Calgary. The city estimates there are about 95,000 licensed dogs, with another 10,000 that need to be registered.

By comparison, about 31,000 cats have been licensed so far, with another 75,000 to go.

"Already, we're seeing a reduced number of intakes into the shelter here," Bruce said. "We've doubled our return-to-owner rate, and we've reduced our euthanasia rate by half."

Billboards paid for by the city have popped up along streets in recent weeks, warning all pet owners that there is zero tolerance for unlicensed dogs or cats.

Calgary city council passed the cat licensing bylaw in March 2006 in an effort to keep the stray cat population down.

The yearly fee for licensing cats is $30 for a cat that is not spayed or neutered, $10 for a cat aged three months or older that is fixed, and $15 for a kitten aged three to six months that isn't fixed.

Bruce said all the city's animal bylaw fees and fines go directly toward helping animals, with city-run programs such as an adoption program and emergency medical care for injured cats and dogs.

"We're in the process now of building our spay/neuter clinic to provide free spay/neuters for people who can't afford to have that done. That'll all be funded out of cat licensing," he said.

"All the costs for that all come out of cat licensing, all the costs for the work we do with cats in the community — rehousing cats, helping cats that have been injured, all those things — all paid for out of cat licensing, not tax dollars."

Read more: [url][/url]

Dog Dancer March 16th, 2010 04:59 PM

Yup, I'd support that too!

14+kitties March 16th, 2010 05:16 PM

I have said all along we should adopt some of Calgary's practices. And yes, I would be willing to pay the fee for a fixed cat. All of them. Just hope they wouldn't try taking away most of my cats!! :eek:

Melinda March 16th, 2010 06:34 PM

you could probably get a special sanctuary licence...because an spca wouldn't want to take them all in, they would probably appreciate someone else doing their work for them!!

14+kitties March 16th, 2010 06:45 PM

[QUOTE=Melinda;897043]you could probably get a special sanctuary licence...because an spca wouldn't want to take them all in, they would probably appreciate someone else doing their work for them!![/QUOTE]

Actually, they do. :D I have already been checked out by the shelter in this area. The officer did thank me. However, they are trying to get a new animal control office in the town we pay taxes to. That may change things. Right now we are patrolled by a larger city a ways away from us.
I think my guys could qualify as being a managed feral colony. The majority of them are semi ferals.

kandy March 16th, 2010 08:01 PM

That is an awesome law! I certainly wish we had something like that here. We don't have many stray dogs, but we have tons of cats that run loose. Some stray and possibly feral, some not. My neighbors down the street have 2 cats that run loose. I bet he wouldn't do that if he was going to get fined for them being out.

binkybuff March 16th, 2010 10:31 PM

Here in Medicine Hat, for a spayed/neutered feline, with a microchip, the cost of the license is $10 for the life of the cat.

However, for a dog, spayed/neutered, with a microchip, the cost of the license is $15 a year.

Those animals not fixed, are charged a higher license fee.

We have had that in place for about 8 ror 9 years now.

take care

Melinda March 17th, 2010 07:50 AM

binkybuff, can you tell me if its decreased the feral/stray cats around your area?

Golden Girls March 17th, 2010 07:58 AM

Yep, could certainly use the same laws here in Quebec.

14+kitties March 17th, 2010 09:08 AM

There was another interesting article printed in a little paper from this area called Out There about feral/wild cats taking over. The article mentioned if every household in their area gave $5.00 they could go a long long way to spay/neuter a lot more ferals.
I will have to take a closer look after work and see if I can find out if it's online anywhere. I'm glad to see the cat's peril is getting more attention. Hopefully something will start to happen in more towns and cities.

Melinda March 17th, 2010 09:13 AM

I am always giving money for our ferals here in cornwall, we adopted the capture/release program a couple years ago

.unknown. March 17th, 2010 10:14 AM

From what I've read, a lot of cities use Calgary's animal control as a model. I've heard them compare my city in shows about animal control, too. It makes me feel sort of proud that in amoungst all of the conservative-ness, the city is progressive in other ways.

I love that there is no chance of BSL here.... It's great.

but that reminds me, I should license my kitty! I will do that right now.

Twocents July 4th, 2010 11:57 PM

Let's Clone Calgary's Animal Control
[B]"Let's Clone Calgary's Animal Control"[/B]


By Ledy VanKavage, June 21, 2010, on

[She has worked extensively on behalf of animals for over 25 years.
She is currently the Senior Legislative Attorney for Best Friends Animal Society.]

"I felt as though I had been living in the Dark Ages when I heard Calgary's top Animal & Bylaw Services officer, Bill Bruce, speak about his city's progressive animal control program at Best Friends’ No More Homeless Pets Conference in Las Vegas last year. Calgary’s Responsible Pet Ownership bylaw is based on four principles: License and provide permanent identification for pets; spay or neuter pets; provide training, physical care, socialization and medical attention for companion animals; and do not allow pets to become a threat or a nuisance in the community. Public safety has been greatly enhanced because of its enactment and enforcement, and by following the bylaw’s principles, Calgary has earned accolades for controlling aggressive-dog incidents and reducing bites...

...Calgary’s licensing rate for dogs is more than 90 percent. The Animal and Bylaw Services department actually makes money, unlike the majority of animal-control facilities in the States. Because of this, licensing fees — not tax dollars — fund the department’s volunteer, public education and animal adoption programs, as well as the operation of its animal shelter and its new low-cost spay/neuter clinic, where low-income pet owners can get their animals sterilized for free.

Humane advocates interested in reforming local animal control should lobby for their cities and counties to clone Calgary's methods. It could save animal lives, enhance public safety and save tax dollars."


Twocents July 5th, 2010 12:16 AM

Rewards program - discount card for responsible pet owners in Calgary
[B][SIZE="5"]I Heart My Pet[/SIZE][/B]

"The City of Calgary Animal & Bylaw Services is excited to announce the launch of our I Heart My Pet rewards program. The program is our way of thanking the thousands of Calgarians who have chosen to licence their pet. A summary of the program and a frequently asked questions resource have been developed to assist in explaining this initiative."


[B]Program site for I Heart My Pet:[/B]


[B]Principals of responsible pet ownership:[/B]


This is an incentive program to encourage responsible pet ownership.

It could be adopted by other municipalities if people asked for it.

It's called the carrot approach (positive reward), versus the stick approach (negative punishment).


binkybuff July 5th, 2010 12:57 PM

Sorry for not answering any questions sooner, just wasn't paying attention hmmmm

Anyway, I live near the outskirts of Medicine Hat, and a lot of folk just move and leave the cats to fend for themselves.

We have several in my area alone, that someone feeds them, and they do have cover, but the person involved does not spay or neuter, so there are new ones all the time.

Am thinking that maybe I should go talk with the park, and several people see if they would help donate to have vet work done. I, myself, am financially stretched so cannot donate, but I could donate my time driving, and helping with traps. Worth a thought anyway.

As far as I am concerned, being indoors does not harm a cat at all, my cat has never been outside, even on her harness, unless in a kennel for travelling.

I absolutely detest having to pick up after other animals that use my front yard as their litter pan. That is both dogs and cats.

take care

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