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Old 06-29-04, 04:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Ok, I'm upset! n e one have this happen before???

our lardlord (who thinks this is all silly as well) informed us today that some old lady saw us with one of our snakes the other day (a cornsnake) and said she's afraid to go back in her apartment and is going to call the police on us and get us removed from the building, etc, etc, etc. she's completely outraged and wants all exotic animals (including sugar gliders) banned from the building. i'd just laugh it off but there is an exotic bylaw that is very often misinterpreted as a complete ban on exotics. even the police don't know the bylaw very well. here's part of the bylaw that i think can help my case:

"6. No person shall keep or cause to be kept:
(a) any snake, reptile, insect or spider not otherwise prohibited by this by-law unless they are housed in an escape-proof enclosure;"
- my snakes, and tarantulas all have screen lids with toughclips.

and according to the Government of Canada: an "exotic animal" means an animal not indigenous to Canada and not commonly kept as a household pet in Canada.

-cornsnakes are by far the most commonly kept snake ever. gliders are commonly kept too, same with tarantulas.

need some advice, what should i do? wait it out or post some info or rant about being protected by the bylaw's shadiness. some people really need to read before opening their mouths about things they know nothing about. i don't like kids or dogs but everyones got one, and i dont complain, even when they're crying and barking.

thanks for listening
emilsmee

I have edited your title of your post, there is a reason certain words are blocked off for content purposes on this site and the use of "*" to make the word come out doesn't mean its allowed. Thanks, Shane.
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Old 06-29-04, 04:09 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Make sure you get a hold of a complete copy of the by-laws and perhaps have your landlord read and sign a copy to show the complaintant. There should be no need for proof of your enclosures unless the complaintant contacts the police and they ask to see your enclosures. If everything is set up in adequate cages and you have nothing to hide, I would allow the police to view your collection just to make the point that all is well and quite normal Have the by-law available for them too. Other than that, there isn't much to do.

Julie
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Old 06-29-04, 04:15 PM   #3 (permalink)
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yeah i printed out the complete animal by-law section for the landlord and highlighted the ones that apply to us. she said that was great and that she could use that to get the lady to be quiet about all this. hope it works... thanks for the advice!
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Old 06-29-04, 05:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Though there may be millions of cornsnakes here in Canda, they are still not indigenous. This is also a perfect example of "don't ask, don't tell". Why have your reptiles where nosy neighbours who'll cause a stink about them, BYLAWS or not?! Just not common sense people. You quoted the "Government of Canada" as your by-law source. Each municipality is responsible for their own bylays, make ABSOLUTELY sure you're not the one "opening their mouths about something they know nothing about." Furthermore, I own reptiles myself, but IMO that kid/dog comment was just ignorant.
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Old 06-29-04, 05:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I think she was implying that just because you don't personally like something it doesn't mean you should prevent others from enjoying it by making a fuss. It's easy to use kids and dogs as examples because pretty well everyone has one or both. Not everyone likes dogs or children. Strange, but true. She also did not mention that her by-law source was the Government of Canada, but stated how it ( the Government of Canada) defines "exotic", also stating that if the animal is not indigenous or is not well known or often kept then it too falls under the title "exotic". I think that it is appauling that people cannot openly admit that they have reptiles for fear of the reaction of the community to which they are a part. It is a mild form of discrimination and shouldn't exist in the first place. I was talking to a lady (maybe 35-40ish) in a pet store the other day, while holding one of thier chameleons, and she asked if it was mine. I said no, but told her I had other reptiles and was a breeder. She looked at me funny and said "But you're not a biker or one of those goth people! You look normal." What the heck was I supposed to say to that? Anyways, we shouldn't have to hide it if the law says it's okay to keep what we all do.

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Old 06-29-04, 06:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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thats exactly what i was getting at julie. mykee has completely misinterpreted what i said. people can walk their dogs and let their cats roam free in the neighbourhoods, but people who enjoy reptiles must hoard them away. they're not my hobby, or my secret, they're just as much part my family as my cats are. i don't go showing them off to everyone and shoving them in their faces. i was bringing home my new cornsnake from work in a kritterkeeper, and not bringing attention to it at all. if anyone asks what i have i try to inform them that snakes aren't unpredictable viscious animals (esp. cornsnakes). animals are only unpredictable and viscious if you don't understand what they're doing and why they're doing it.
i'm just really outraged at how fear replaces knowledge. sorry to rant...
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Old 06-29-04, 10:34 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I apologize, I must have misread your initial post. I agree with your statement regarding having to hide our reptiles regardless of by-laws. What I have a particular disdain for are the people who use the by-laws in their favour to flaunt their reptiles with no respect for the people who are either scared (be it out of ignorance), disgusted, and such. It is unfortunate that we, as reptile owners, have to go "underground" so to speak, but that's the burden we have to carry . However, I'm not going to put myself in the line of fire and risk losing my collection to educate a few.
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Old 06-30-04, 10:38 AM   #8 (permalink)
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no you dont have to hide your animals all you have to do is stand up for your right to own them,

if it came onto me and some bylaw cop tried to take my animals i would counter charge and do the good fight and by saying the laws are discriminating, canada is a great country and we are the people that can fight anything we want.

if i cant keep snakes then nobody else should be able to keep any pet for that matter as snakes are my choice of pet its only right, there are no logical reasons to have them banned, i see alot more reasons to ban cats and dogs before reptiles

just cause someone else dont like them too bad i dont like SUV's should they be banned
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Old 06-30-04, 11:00 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Yes, SUV's should be banned :P

Otherwise, I agree with you completely.
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Old 06-30-04, 11:13 AM   #10 (permalink)
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You oughta go talk to the lady who is making the complaints. Approach her in a very respectful and mature fashion and Im sure she will at least hear you out. She may not change her mind, but she may approach this whole situation in a different way, and the fact that you had the courage to discuss this with her in a civilized manner may do wonders for this little dilemma.

Good luck.
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Old 06-30-04, 11:16 AM   #11 (permalink)
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I agree with Shaggybill. It's definitely worth a try. If you can just explain to her that they are your pets and you love them, so are very careful that they can't get out, it may help. Also, explain that they are harmless animals, as well. It can't hurt, and may help!
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Old 06-30-04, 02:51 PM   #12 (permalink)
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the landlord won't tell me who it is... otherwise i would've tried to calm her down myself. but yeah i'm thinking of starting a petition to have the exotic ban revamped. it should be only animals like tigers, venomous snakes, etc. that are banned.
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Old 06-30-04, 03:09 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Well this to prevent this from ever happen again. i suggest you keep it in your apartment and make sure you dont take it out of the apartment where peopel can see your exotic aniamal. Its also best not to tell anyone in your area. Words do spread around, and they end up in the wrong places. So i suggest you leave it in you apartment and just brag about your snake on the fourms Just be careful. Some people dont like dogs and will try and get rid of those to!

Meow
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Old 06-30-04, 03:55 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I completely agree with Meow. Out of sight, out of mind. Just because you FEEL you have the right to show off your reptiles in public, doesn't mean it's an intelligent thing to do.
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Old 06-30-04, 11:38 PM   #15 (permalink)
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One thing to consider, Emily...

You can argue about cats and dogs versus herps all you want, but the bottom line is, those are accepted pets in our society.

Herps are not.

Regardless of whether this is fair, legal or whatever, you cannot change the structure of our society. If you fight it, you will lose. You will not change this lady's mind about herps, nor will many people feel empathy for the snake owners. That's just the way it is. Life isn't always fair.
I think the best you can do, is keep a low profile... and attempt to educate anyone who is willing to listen about the beauty of keeping snakes and spiders. Start with the ones willing to listen.
Cheers.
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