Montreal’s Pit Bull Ban Now in Effect
Just this past week, the City of Montreal passed a new and very controversial bylaw which quickly began trending as the #PitBullBan. Officially known as the Règlement sur le contrôle des animaux, the new bylaw bans ownership of new pit bulls outright or pit bull types in the city’s 19 boroughs. The new rules also make it mandatory for Montrealers who currently own a pit bull to obtain a special permit by March 31, 2017. Anyone who fails to comply with the new rules can end up with a fine ranging anywhere from $300 – $700.
The SPCA launched a lawsuit, contesting the bylaw, and on the day the new rules were scheduled to come into force, Superior Court Justice Louis Gouin ordered a suspension until a final court ruling could be delivered. That court ruling came and allowed the bylaw to enter into effect.
As of today’s date, pit bull owners have just days to ensure they comply.
The Pit Bull Ban Explained
As of October 3, it will be illegal to acquire a pit bull or pit bull-type dog, defined as follows:
- Staffordshire bull terriers
- American pit bull terriers
- American Staffordshire terriers
- Any mix with these breeds
- Any dog that presents characteristics of one of those breeds
The legislation classifies dogs into 2 categories of:
- At Risk: Dogs that exhibit aggressive behaviour such as biting.
- Dangerous: Dogs that have killed a person or been deemed dangerous by an official or animal expert.
Any dogs deemed dangerous will be euthanized under this new legislation. A dog at risk can also be euthanized if it it deemed dangerous by a city official or animal expert.
Additionally, as of October 3, the following rules will apply to pet owners:
- At maximum, an owner can possess no more than 2 dogs (no matter the breed) in one residence without a special permit.
- Anyone with a criminal record will not be permitted to own a pit bull.
- All pit bulls must be sterilized, vaccinated and also microchipped. If any one of these is not done, the owner of the dog will not be able to obtain a permit.
- Outside of the residence, any dog (of any breed) must be on a 1.25-metre leash and muzzled, as well as supervised by someone 18 years and older.
- It is forbidden to walk more than 2 dogs (or 2 animals of any type) at the same time within city limits without a special permit.
In regards to the permit that must be acquired to own a pit bull, a few things must be kept in mind:
- If you get a new pit bull-type dog, you must obtain a permit within 15 days, or do so, at the latest, one day after the dog reaches 3 months of age.
- As a permit holder, you must notify the city of any changes within 15 days such as a change of address, or death, disappearance, or change of ownership of the dog.
Veterinary offices or animal refuges can breathe a sigh of relief as many of these restrictions do not apply to them. Anyone operating such an establishment should check into how the bylaw affects them.
Registration clinics are now available in various Accès Montréal offices and borough halls:
Tuesday March 28, 2017 from 4pm to 7pm
5 650, rue D’Iberville, 2nd floor
Montreal (Quebec) H2G 2B3
Wednesday March 29, 2017 from 4pm to 7pm
5 160, boul. Décarie, ground floor
Montreal (Quebec) H3X 2H9
Thursday March 30, 2017 from 4pm to 7pm
55, avenue Dupras
Montreal (Quebec) H8R 4A8
After applying, owners will have until the June 1st to provide proof that they meet the necessary requirements to be granted the special license for this kind of dog.
And from now on, no new pit bull-type dogs will be permitted on Montreal territory.