"That's the big problem, people aren't using their common sense."

You know how cute and cuddly your dog can be when it wakes up with you in the morning, yawns, stretches out and then wags it's tail waiting for you to crawl out of bed and let it outside.

Your dog, unfortunately, can't pick up after itself. That's a duty for you.

What about when it comes to public spaces? Can we let our dogs roam free in public areas? What by-laws do the Town of Drumheller have in place when it comes to owning and handling a dog?

Tom Pozzolo, a Peace Officer hired by the town of Drumheller to re-enforce by-laws, has insights to all of the above,

"If they follow the proper pet owners responsibility by-law, cleaning up after their dogs and keep their dog on a leash. In non-off leash areas, parks or walking paths, if they have them on their leash then they are under control. All the owner has to do, is follow the by-laws." he continues, "That's the big problem, people aren't using their common sense."

The Town of Drumheller has an entire PDF dedicated to The Responsible Pet Owner By-Laws. These by-laws range from small occurances to big issues that need attention.

A few examples are outlined:

SECTION 3 -3.5 clearly outlines, "The owner of an animal shall forthwith remove any defecation left by the animal on any public property other than that of the owner."

SECTION 4- 4.2 says, "No person shall permit an animal to run at large."

SECTION 6- 6.1 states, "No person shall own or keep any dog within the Town unless such dog is licensed..."

SECTION 14.2- 14.2.4 explains a more intense reality for a dog owner, "An owner of a dog that has bitten, injured, chased or exerted force in any way on a human or other animal may be prosecuted under the Dangerous Dogs Act in lieu, or in addition to, being prosecuted under the provisions of the Bylaw."

Failure to comply with town by-laws can result in some unwanted results for dog owners included are fines or even town possession of the animal.

Pozzolo confirms,

"Under the responsible pet owners by-law, there is all kinds of fines under there. Anywhere from $100 dollars for dogs running at large or for a first offence. It goes up from there. Dogs alarming persons is a $350 dollar ticket and(in some cases) a $500 ticket."

If you own a dog, you already know how expensive one or even multiple dogs can be. Adding to that cost is avoidable by being a responsible dog owner and doing what neighbours and the town expect you to do.

To be apart of the solution is always an embraced idea but when you become part of the problem, Pozzolo says, the city won't be happy about it,

"The town ends up footing the bill (for non-responsible dog owners) and as we do not know who has done it, by-law and the town can't do much about it."

This also includes dogs destroying public or private property such as chewing on benches, digging holes and overall altering objects from it's original state.

Being a responsible dog owner clears the way for any inconvenience or danger other citizens may get in and also protects you and your dog(s).

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