After a resident complained about a neighbor with "over 10 dogs," North Tonawanda officials said they'll be looking into making adjustments to the city's dog code.
During its meeting Tuesday, the North Tonawanda Common Council heard from a Greenwood Circle resident who complained that his next door neighbor doesn't properly clean up after the several dogs that live on the property. He said the smell from his neighbor's yard makes it difficult to enjoy his own yard.
"I don't think it's normal, or very healthy, for someone to own 10 pets," he said. "The smell is atrocious."
The resident said he's been in discussions with city officials about the issue for the last two years. On Tuesday, he presented the council with several suggestions for how to address the problem. This included setting a limit on the number of dogs allowed to be kept on one property or making it a requirement to obtain a kennel permit if you are going to have a high number of dogs.
City officials said that taking a look at the city's dog code has been on the agenda but that they want to be certain to strike a balance between protecting neighbors and not causing issues for people who have multiple animals, but take care of them properly.
Second Ward Alderwoman Donna Braun said she had recently received a number of similar complaints regarding issues with dogs. She agreed that the city should take a look at the code and making some adjustments.
Alderman-at-Large Austin Tylec noted the option of setting dog limits based on property size so those who wish to own more dogs can do so if they have a property large enough to accommodate them.
Council President Eric Zadzilka said the city has been looking at suggestions, seeking input from its department heads and weighing which possible code amendments would address the concerns that have been brought to them. He mentioned looking into how other municipalities handle restrictions like dog limits to assess their effectiveness.
"I would like to look at this from all aspects, but in your situation, it's extremely out of control and we need to do something," he said, addressing the resident who brought the complaint to the council. "But I can tell you that a solution is what we're working for and part of it is working on this ordinance."