Mayor of Waldheim resigns amid pet controversy

After pleading with town council Tuesday night, two Waldheim, Sask. residents were told they will not be allowed to keep their extra pets.

Couple told two pets must go after town council rules on bylaw

Doug Canning, back centre, says the town administrator sold him six licenses for his pets. (Madeline Kotzer/CBC)

After pleading with town council Tuesday night, two Waldheim, Sask. residents were told they will not be allowed to keep their extra pets. 

Doug and Karen Canning moved to Waldheim with three dogs and three cats, but the town has a bylaw stating they're only allowed to have two of each animal. 

The Cannings have been ordered to get rid of one cat and dog due to a town bylaw permitting only two of each pet. (CBC)

But the Canning said they were sold six pet licenses in 2012, all signed by the town administrator. They said they were told they could keep their pets as long as they didn't replace them once one died.

Then earlier this year they received a letter ordering them to get rid of one dog and one cat by Nov. 15. 

Tuesday was the third time they tried to convince officials to allowed them to keep their pets. 

If they don't comply, the Cannings face a fine of $100, followed by monthly fines of $500 if they still have the animals. 

Doug Canning said Tuesday he is done dealing with the town.

"I plan to just keep my six animals and when the bylaw officer comes and charges me I'll ask for a court date," he said. 

Mayor of Waldheim resigns

Acting Mayor Reg Pauls, at head of table, says he won't change his mind about the pet limit. (Madeline Kotzer/CBC)

The mayor of Waldheim, Barbara Schultz, resigned recently.

She refused an interview with CBC News, but said in an email to a CBC reporter that she had received hate mail condemning her actions in the Cannings case. 

"Well, since I have resigned as the Mayor of Waldheim, I guess you won't be speaking to me," the email said. "Actually, in one of the hate emails I got, I was compared to Hitler thanks to the CBC."

Acting Mayor Reg Pauls said he believes the town administrator's version of events.

"Our town administrator has also said and continues to state that Mr.Canning did not have permission to keep the pets," said Pauls. 

Six people from the community came to support the Cannings at the meeting. 

"If there was a gentleman's agreement made, that gentleman's agreement needs to be honoured," said one supporter. "It is as simple as that."

The town of Waldheim said it won't budge on its pet bylaw.

Doug Canning, however, said he's not planning to get rid of his extra pets and that he'll continue to fight for them. 


  • We initially reported that the mayor of Waldheim, Barbara Schultz, resigned October 15th, however she had resigned prior to that date. We also initially reported that the acting Mayor, Reg Pauls, said he believed Doug Canning was "lying". However Pauls said he believes the town administrator's version of events.
    Oct 25, 2013 5:23 PM CT


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