Dog control leaves much to be desired

Diesel was seized over two years after (one neighbour's) accusation.

To the editor:

The following are some facts the Regional District of Central Okanagan does not seem to want the public to be aware of.

The RDCO dog control’s own documentation shows they failed to open a file, much less investigate several incidents. They were aware since 2008 that I was involved in a neighbourhood dispute. One complainant’s statement mentioned her knocking on doors to get some action against (my dog) Diesel (me).

Diesel was seized over two years after her accusation.

The RDCO wrote numerous tickets which I contested in court. The RDCO did not win any of them. The RDCO, through their lawyer, opposed any bail for Diesel. The RDCO also opposed any increase in visitation. I got a total of one-half hour once per week.

The RDCO did make an offer to release Diesel to me, after he had been caged for one year, and only after I filed job complaints. The RDCO was totally intransigent and would not negotiate. The RDCO never responded to my counteroffer.

The latest RDCO offer was, in their words, non-negotiable. That is not an offer, this is dictating. It was stipulated in provincial court that no matter where Diesel was taken, other than this two-block area, there was never a problem and Diesel could and did interact with other dogs without attacking them. The provincial judge also stated that the failure of RDCO to explore all the options for settlement was in itself a reason to return Diesel to me.

There were evidently been tons of Xmas cards, (and gifts) sent for Diesel. I was never notified of this by RDCO nor have I received any.

I have always stated that I am not perfect and neither was Diesel, but have maintained that Diesel did not do what he was accused of. I feel I have been victimized by a few neighbours, and now by RDCO.

I ask you: Who is callous? Who has the ego? Who is irresponsible?

I have had a number of dogs over the years without any problems. Diesel is a victim, as was Shadow. The consultant who investigated the RDCO animal control was quite critical of many facets of their operation, including that they had no policy and procedures, no formalized training program among others. He also noted that they had little to no respect from most of the community.

Diesel has been assessed by a provincial expert who stated that Diesel would not attack, but would not shy away from one either. This was testified to in court as was testimony that Diesel was attacked first. Diesel was assessed by a recognized provincial expert.

Diesel has been called the $100,000 dog. The RDCO has only themselves to blame for this cost. They could have simply written a ticket and avoided not only the taxpayer cost, but my costs.

If this is an example of how the RDCO animal control treats animals and their owners, I think that each and every animal owner should be very afraid. There are many more facts but only so much space. I hope this gives you a more realistic grasp of the situation and the RDCO actions and attitudes.

Dave Smith,



Kelowna Capital News