Dogs Not Welcome at Tonawanda City Events

City passed an ordinance that will ban dogs from events like Canal Fest

July 02, 2019 - 1:13 pm

TONAWANDA (WBEN) - Don't plan on bringing your dog to the upcoming Canal Fest in Tonawanda because they're no longer welcome. In fact, dogs are no longer allowed at any major city events.

The city passed an ordinance several weeks back that prohibits bringing dogs, unless they're service dogs, to city events due in large part to the experience at last year's Canal Fest. Jace Kowsky serves as the dog control officer for the city, and he explained that he received numerous complaints about dogs following last year's festival.

"We had an issue last year at Canal Fest where I had over 100 calls the second day after Canal Fest starteed," said Kowsky. "The ball was kind of rolling there at that point that something needed to be done and dogs really shoudl not be down there in the main midway of Canal Fest."

Kowsky noted that there were problems with dogs peeing on vendors and tents, stealing food out of strollers and having a difficult time handling the heat and stimulation of the event, so he wrote a proposal to the city council and suggested that they enforce a ban of dogs at similar events.

As there would obviously be some owners displeased with the decision, Kowsky noted that this ordinance is not meant to be a war on pets, but he simply believes that leaving pets at home will be better for everyone involved.

"We want people to come down and use the canal and use the hub area, but we're just trying to get people and their canines out of the main bottleneck of the midways at Canal Fest and the food trucks on Thursday nights," he said. "We want to keep all of the pets out of the middle."

Listen to the full conversation with Kowsky below:

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