Candice Lander sits with her six-year-old dog Harvey, who she’s owned for a year and a half. It’s her only dog left after her other dog, Cesar, was seized and euthanized amidst controversy. (Trevor Beggs)

B.C. homeless woman says city wrongly euthanized her dog

City of Surrey bylaw manager says dog was ‘very violent to people at the Strip’

SURREY — A homeless woman is heartbroken after she says the City of Surrey wrongly euthanized her dog.

“His blood is on their hands, and it’s never, ever, ever going to wash off,” 22-year-old Candice Lander said. “Somebody needs to pay for what they’ve done to him.”

But the city says the dog was “very aggressive” and bylaw officers had responded to a number of attacks.

It all started on July 16th. According to Freedom of Information request documents obtained by homeless advocate Erin Schulte, bylaw officers were called down to the Strip after Lander’s three-year-old pit bull terrier, Cesar, was involved in a “dog attack.” The dog was seized.

Chaos ensued, which was highlighted by a video that made its way online recently. Many of the people in the video are shown yelling at police after they put Lander in handcuffs and took her away.

No charges were laid and Lander was later released.

See also: Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner says city reviewing dog bylaw after recent attacks

Lander said she called the Surrey Animal Resource Centre the next day to pick her dog up. After the centre told her the fees were $160, Lander said she got ready to go pick up her dog later that day. Lander then says she got a phone call a half hour later from the centre, saying that they couldn’t release Cesar, and that she would have to get the dog back by contacting the bylaw department.

On Aug. 1st, she went down to the shelter to visit Cesar for the first time since he had been seized – it was his third birthday. Lander said when she got to the shelter, she learned that Cesar had been euthanized.

She says she had not been notified about the dog’s death.

“I was on the ground for 40 minutes crying, asking, ‘Why did you do this to my boy?’” Lander said, her emotions getting the best of her.

“I couldn’t save him and I couldn’t protect him. It’s a horrible feeling.”

Lander claims Cesar was not violent.

“He didn’t bite anybody,” she said. “He was scared s***less, he had his tail tucked between his legs when he was being taken away. He was so scared. he probably sat there scared for the last week and a half, wondering why his mom hadn’t come to pick him up.”

See also: Surrey sinks its teeth into comprehensive new dog bylaw

The City of Surrey says Cesar was previously designated a “dangerous dog.”

Bylaw Manager Jas Rehal told the Now-Leader that Lander was notified that the dog would be put down if he wasn’t muzzled and put in a six-sided enclosure.

“After an incident in which [the dog] went to attack an individual, this dog had other incidents in which it tried to attack people,” said Rehal.

He said the city provided a leash and muzzle, which Rehal claims was not used.

“There were a number of attacks and the dog was very aggressive… The dog was very violent to people at the Strip.”

Documentation regarding a specific attack by Cesar has not been made public at this time. One email in the FOI’s obtained by Schulte shows that a bylaw officer witnessed and reported an “attempted bite.”

Schulte, who has spent the last four years working in the area with the Pop Up Soup Kitchen, says Cesar’s presence was never an issue on the strip.

“If Cesar was a dangerous dog, he wouldn’t have been here on the street. The homeless here wouldn’t have tolerated it,” Schulte said.

“If he was this dangerous, horrible dog, people would have been cheering [for him to be taken away]. If you watch the video, they were screaming at the cops in anger.”

See also: Several dog fines climb

www.facebook.com

Just Posted

How do we solve the homelessness issue in Campbell River?

Candidates give their thoughts on the city’s role in reducing homelessness

Don’t let your guard down, fire chief says after two house fires in Willow Point

Two house fires in Willow Point have Campbell River’s fire chief reminding… Continue reading

Veteran hospice doctor credits Campbell River community for its thriving program

Dr. Deb Braithwaite spent 30 years working with Victoria Hospice Society

Cole Slaney leads the Campbell River Storm on and off the ice

“He’s always the last off the ice,” said Elizabeth Cudmore, the Campbell… Continue reading

Singer k.d. lang receives Alberta’s highest honour

Celebrated singer-songwriter k.d. lang received the Alberta Order of Excellence in Edmonton

Enbridge aims for mid-November to finish B.C. pipeline repair after blast

A natural gas pipeline that ruptured and burned near Prince George caused an explosion and fireball

How to get government cheques if Canada Post staff go on strike

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers said members could go on rotating strikes as early as Monday

Anti-SOGI school trustee files defamation lawsuit against BCTF president

Barry Neufeld says Glen Hansman’s words caused him “indignity,” “personal harassment,” and “anxiety”

Ocean ‘blob’ returns to B.C.’s North Coast

A 2,000 kilometre patch of warm ocean water could signal a warm winter in Prince Rupert

Pot sales down by nearly 70% on Day 2 of legalization in B.C.

Several products on BC Cannabis Store are still sold out

B.C. jury finds man guilty of Japanese exchange student’s murder

Natsumi Kogawa was found at empty heritage mansion shortly after she was reported missing in 2016

B.C. man accused of killing Belgian tourist along Highway 1 appears in court

Sean McKenzie, 27, made second court appearance since his arrest in connection with the murder of Amelie Sakkalis

Colourfully named cannabis products appeal to youth, Tory health critic says

Conservative health critic Marilyn Gladu says the Liberal government needs to do more to ensure cannabis products available online are not enticing to young people

Most Read