BSL in Quebec – What you can do now

Screen Shot 2016-06-19 at 9.11.04 AMIn Quebec, BSL talks have gone from speculation to reality at a dizzying pace. Because things have happened so fast, people are just starting to organize. For now, here are a few things you can do to help:

1. Follow the story and the facts. The media will report the most sensationalistic soundbites, but organizations like HugABull will attempt to report balanced updates. The Montreal SPCA has stepped up, making a strong statement against the proposed breed specific approach, and will be posting updates in the days to come. Follow them!
SPCA Montreal on Facebook
SPCA Montreal on Twitter

2. Spread balanced, proactive information. Encourage anyone you know in Quebec to get involved and speak out. Here are a few specific opportunities:

13423724_903385393105666_3756843673374570305_nUse the hashtag #jamaissansmonchien on Instagram to share family photos of your blocky-headed dog in a family context.

There is also a petition circulating: NON au banissement des pittbulls au Quebec. . While most online petitions aren’t legally admissable, a large number of signatories will show support for this issue. English translation is below.

Protests are being organized on Saturday, July 16 in Montreal and Quebec City.

3. Contact the policy makers. Ask them to consider evidence-based, sensible alternatives to breed-specific legislation. Polite, well-worded messages ONLY please. Emotions run high on this topic, but strong language only perpetuates stereotypes about pit bull owners and supporters.

In Quebec City, where the mayor Regis Labeaume has pledged to ban pit bulls by January 1, 2017.
Email (links to an online form)
@villequebec on Twitter

In Montreal, a breed-specific approach to animal control has been proposed. Email Mayor Denis Coderre with alternatives.
Email (links to an online form)
Denis Coderre on Facebook
Denis Coderre on Twitter

Premier Philippe Couillard has indicated that the province of Quebec will “probably” follow Ontario’s model of a province-wide ban on certain breeds.
Email (links to online form)
Philippe Couillard on Facebook
Philippe Couillard on Twitter

13453376_10154060001546558_1327510693_oIn your communications, please keep the following in mind:

  • it’s okay to keep it short – in fact that is preferable to long essays that probably won’t be read anyway.
  • keep it polite and articulate.
  • try to find a French-speaking friend to translate, and if you have a connection to Quebec or one of the cities affected, emphasize this. They will be more interested in hearing from residents, potential tourists, or business people rather than random people half a country away. If you know people in Quebec, ask them to do everything they can.
  • try to share facts, but feel free to speak from the heart. A photo of your dog in jammies probably won’t change legislation, but a first-person account of how this legislation affects responsible citizens and average families might cause someone to think.

Some sample letters are at here and here. Information on breed-specific legislation is on our website and we will be sharing more resources soon.

English translation of petition at

NO to the banning of pitbulls in Quebec

After the headlines that have made the front pages in Quebec concerning an entire race that we are planning to ban, I believe it is important that we speak in the name of an animal who cannot defend itself.

An animal is an animal, regardless of the race or variety. We do not have the right to penalize citizens who have good pitbulls simply because they are born with the name of their race. Let us respect the families, the citizens, the good people who have a healthy animal in their homes.

To those who fear this race, please conider the legitimacy of your fear. Is it the media who is conveying an erroneous or inaccurate message? Is it the stories of dog attacks, poor treatment, or simply a fear of large dogs?

Considering that the banning of pitbulls by our neighbors in Ontario have demonstrated no resultsm and that worse yet, the number of dog bites is even on the rise, we find this strategy completely useless.

Considering the lack of comprehensive and serious scientific data on the subject, we refuse to let ourselves be seduced by this easy and irrational solution out of fear and disinformation.

Considering that veterinarians who specialize in behavior like Dr. Diane Frank agree and have stated that the solution is not the banning of a race, but the recognition, evaluation, and monitoring of mental illness among dogs as well as the education and socialization of normal dogs and the education of dog owners.

Considering that the solution comes from the education of society, from the awareness on the parts of dog owners. For example, by bite-prevention sessions for primary school students, from instruction on dog body-language, from the abolishment of puppy factories, from the obligatory sterilzation of animals belonging to companies without breeding permits, from the formulation of precise terms and conditions required for the use of terms such as “behavior specialist” and “canine instructor,” etc.

Considering that there are dangerous dogs of all races and sizes and that racism has never been an interesting solution for the advancement of our society.

Considering that there are extraordinary and well-balanced dogs of all races and sizes, we refuse euthanasia and the human drama that the banning of pitbulls would entail.

Via the Association of Veterinary Doctors of Quebec

The information above is based on our own research. If any links are faulty or there are better resources available, please email us at and we will update.

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