Owners who leave their dogs in unsafe situations could now be fined as much as $500 in Port Moody.
The city amended its animal control bylaw earlier this week, allowing officers to ticket owners who leave their pet outdoors or in a vehicle without adequate protection from the hot, cold or wet weather.
A first offence carries a fine of $100, and getting caught again will net you $500. If an incident is reported to police, officers will now contact the city, and the bylaw department will determine if a fine is warranted.
“In the summer months, bylaw enforcement staff typically receive complaints from concerned citizens about dogs left in hot cars, but a gap in the animal control bylaw meant the city was unable to impose a penalty on dog owners who put their pets at risk,” Mayor Mike Clay said in a news release on Thursday.
In 2015, Nanaimo passed a bylaw that allowed animal control officers to hand out $500 fines for dogs found in vehicles during hot weather and another $200 if the pets had to be rescued and impounded.
Other regions to enact similar rules include the Central Okanagan and Surrey.