Responsible Pet Ownership

cat and dog

The Township of Stone Mills promotes responsible pet ownership to ensure pets do not cause a nuisance or a safety concern for other residents and to ensure pets are treated in a humane manner. Although complaints of a nuisance or safety issue are addressed by Municipal Law Enforcement Officers contracted by the Township, the OSPCA is still expected to address issues respecting animal cruelty, [Call 310-SPCA (7722)].

Attitudes towards pets has evolved and many now regard their pet as “one of the family”. However, for others, the dog is still an outside animal. The OSPCA has taken the position that dogs should not be chained, citing that chained dogs can suffer physically and psychologically, and as a result, there is a greater risk of a bite should they encounter another person.

As a compromise to these very different outlooks, the Township has taken the position that a dog which is kept outside should:

  • be provided with a well insulated dog house;
  • have the opportunity for socialization with other dogs;
  • be exercised regularly; and
  • be provided with the essentials of life such as adequate food and water.

Some municipalities, primarily urban centres, have taken a stricter approach and have introduced by-laws which restrict tethering times for a dog, some to 4 hours or less.

This need for a well constructed and well insulated dog house is important, particularly for the short haired breeds, pups, and older dogs. The OSPCA provides instructions for constructing the “Ideal Doghouse” on their website at:

A video is also available on YouTube which explains “How to build your very own Ideal Doghouse”.

While the Ideal Doghouse provides protection from rain and cold, please note that dogs can also suffer in times of extreme heat. The ideal dog house has two chambers. The entrance chamber is not insulated and therefore more appropriate for warmer weather. Locating your Ideal Doghouse under trees will also provide shade and help to keep your pet cooler during the hot summer months.

Locally, a group of volunteers in the Township have constructed an Ideal Doghouse with the intent to donate this to an owner of an outside dog and to raise public awareness respecting responsible pet ownership. If you would like:

  • additional information respecting this program;
  • would like to help out;
  • request to be considered as a recipient for this Ideal Doghouse; or
  • be considered for possible financial assistance for the construction of your own Ideal Doghouse,

please contact:

Remember, your dog is a social animal, and requires your regular attention and exercise.