Saanich pound warns dog owners to obey park rules

Control your dog or face the fines.

That’s the message from Saanich pound officers who are ready to dole out fines ranging from $100-$1,000 for non-compliant dog owners.

“We’re getting more and more complaints from non-dog-owners, using the parks and (having) dogs running up to them,” Saanich pound officer Susan Ryan said. “Some people are just deathly afraid of dogs. Other people just don’t want to figure out if a dog’s friendly or not.”

With the improved summer weather, more dog owners are out and about with their pets and more people are enjoying parks. Saanich’s three pound officers respond to an average of five dog attacks daily throughout the season, yet general control remains a larger issue.

Dogs may be allowed off leash at most Saanich parks, but Ryan said owners need to rein in their animals unless they respond to voice commands.

Summer beach regulations are also in effect. Dogs are banned on most of Cordova Bay and Cadboro Bay beaches throughout the daytime, starting at 9 a.m., and at all times in Whitehead Park and the beach at Mount Douglas Park. Additionally, dogs are prohibited year round from Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary and Quick’s Bottom Park.

“Everybody’s welcome to use the parks, but don’t let your animal impede the rights of others,” Ryan said.

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