For now, unlike cats in Victoria, Saanich’s felines can continue to roam free of leashes and other restrictions.
On Sept. 30, in a meeting than ran over four hours, Saanich council voted unanimously to take no action to pursue cat control bylaws at this time.
In the report from Brent Reems, director of building, bylaw, licensing and legal services, it was emphasized that the financial and enforcement implications of cat control bylaws would put a strain on the District. The effort put in to capture and manage elusive cats would be too great and the fees paid to the Capital Regional District for use of the animal shelter would increase, the report noted.
While discussing the matter, Mayor Fred Haynes noted that the report stated that police resources were stretched too thin and the cat control bylaws would add more responsibilities to the Pound Section. Coun. Rebecca Mersereau also pointed out that based on the report, she didn’t feel that implementing cat control regulations would address the roaming cat concerns.
“I’m not terribly surprised that we can not control cats,” noted Coun. Zac de Vries with a laugh while voicing his support for the motion.
City of Victoria bylaws actually mandate that cats remain in the owner’s direct control when they’re in a public setting, which means in a kennel or on a lead.