Proposed Laval bylaw clamps down on unregistered, unsterilized animals

Laval is the latest Quebec municipality looking to tighten its animal ownership regulations. A new bylaw, introduced during a council meeting on February 7, would make it mandatory to sterilize, register, and microchip cats and dogs.

Municipal council to vote on stricter animal control regulations on March 14, 2017

The Laval animal control bylaw seeks to limit how long animals can be left alone in vehicles. (Jeff Stapleton/CBC)

Laval is opting not to introduce breed-specific legislation as it moves to tighten its animal ownership regulations, saying there's no evidence banning particular breeds like pit bulls would improve safety.

The new proposed bylaw bares many of the hallmarks of Montreal's new animal control legislation, minus the ban on pit bulls. If passed, among other new regulations, it will make registering, microchipping and sterilizing cats and dogs mandatory.

Mayor Marc Demers said council heard advice from specialists and decided against targeting specific breeds when it drafted the new bylaw.

"We don't believe that is a solution," he said. "And we don't believe it's the cause of the problem.... We think that part of the solution is to make sure that animals are being properly treated, and the owners of animals are responsible for what their animals do."

Annual permits proposed

The bylaw would require all cats and dogs to have permits from the city. The cost for registering a cat would be $15 and the cost for dogs would be $27. The permits are valid for a year and Laval residents can get them at the Multiservice Centre on 1333 Chomedey Boulevard.

Sterilization and microchips would also be mandatory for all cats and dogs. Starting on Jan. 1, 2018, all cats and dogs older than six months must be sterilized. Some exceptions may apply but owners will need to provide a note from a veterinarian.

Can't leave animals in cars

If it's colder than –10 C, or warmer than 20 C, animals cannot be left inside vehicles for longer than 10 minutes. As well, windows must be left open.

Finally, all cats and dogs must be vaccinated against rabies.

The new bylaw will be voted on during the municipal council meeting on March 14. If passed, it would come into effect Apr. 1, 2017.

Owners found breaking the rules will face fines.