With some alterations that address public concerns, the District of Port Hardy has given the green light to legislation that will allow for a new boarding kennel.
At its regular meeting May 26, District of Port Hardy Council gave first and second readings to a change to its Zoning Bylaw that would allow a kennel to be operated on Bronze Road (on the way to Storey’s Beach.) Currently the property, located in the Tacan Industrial Park, is zoned Light Industrial.
Dylan and Kristy Shaw, who own and operate Island’s Edge Contracting Ltd., wanted to be able to house their contracting business, a caretaker’s dwelling, and in the future, a dog kennel operation at the site. Rather than amend the existing applicable Light Industrial zone, administration recommended that the property be considered for a new zoning category – Comprehensive Development 6, which would permit all of the existing uses of the Light Industrial zone as well as the additional use of animal kennel. This approach would ensure that kennels are not permitted outright on other properties that are included in the Light Industrial zone which are scattered throughout the District, without first undergoing a review as to location and potential impact. Fears that the proposed boarding kennel could turn into a “pit bull” breeding facility were raised at a public hearing in Council chambers June 23. At their July 14 regular meeting, council voted to rescind the previous bylaw they had given first and second reading to and vote on a revised one that included some stipulations. In order to address the concerns raised at the public hearing, council revised the bylaw to include that “no more than three female dogs may be kept on the parcel for breeding purposes; the breeding dogs can only be of American Bully and/or French Bulldog breeds and must be registered as such; and, there shall be a maximum of two litters of pups per year per parcel.”
“I tend to agree with this,” said Councillor Fred Robertson, adding a boarding kennel “sounds like a really good idea to me. I think this is a way to address concerns on both sides,” Robertson said.
Councillor Dennis Dugas said he has spent a lot of time researching the American Bully breed since the public hearing and “I’m quite convinced that the American Bully is not a Pit Bull.
“It’s all about the people that own the dog. It’s all about the people that train the dog,” Dugas said.
“I like the amended version because that was a big concern,” Dugas said. Director of Financial Services Allison McCarrick said this current bylaw does not address the animal care and control bylaw “which will have to be adjusted.”