SPCA ecstatic about Valerie Plante's win
Published Tuesday, November 7, 2017 9:06AM EST
The SPCA Montreal hopes Montreal's Mayor-elect Valerie Plante will quickly move to change the city's animal control bylaw.
The animal rights lobby group frequently clashed with Mayor Denis Coderre during his term not only about pit bulls, but also about caleches.
Now SPCA lawyer Sophie Gaillard believes Montrealers have elected a mayor who is in line with the animal rights group's views.
"Well we're extremely pleased with the election results. Projet Montreal has a very progressive and well thought out platform when it comes to animal welfare and animal services," said Gaillard.
Plante has promised she will alter the animal control bylaw to remove breed-specifc provisions that are currently being challenged in court by the SPCA.
Many animal advocacy groups hope that change will happen in the next few months.
"I think by the first of March they should be able to put this in place," said Johanne Tasse of the Adoption Centres for Companion animals of Quebec. "We know what needs to be done. We know what Calgary has done. Just take it and apply it here."
The Calgary model espoused by the SPCA and others requires all dogs to be registered, that dogs be kept on a short leash except when at an off-leash park, and fines of up to $1,500 for non-compliance.
Calgary is also making it easier for dog owners to report bites, although it does not track the number and severity of bites by breed.
"We're more than happy to help the new administration to develop and put in place effective measures that actually do address the issue of dog bites," said Gaillard.
Plante's actions on pit bulls may be irrelevant, however, since the provincial government tabled Bill 128 in April which would ban several breeds of dogs, including pit bulls, province-wide.
That bill is being lead by Public Security Minister Martin Coiteux, who met with Plante on Tuesday in his role as the Minister for Montreal.
The SPCA is also hoping Plante will ban caleches, which the mayor-elect said was an "inhumane and unsafe industry."
At the SPCA's gala on Thursday members plan to toast Plante's victory -- and what they see as their victory too.