Animals on DATS Policy
All vehicles operated under DATS are not required to transport animals other than assistance dogs while providing DATS service.
Animals in Homes & Yards
If an operator encounters a non-assistance animal at your pick-up location which they consider to be a threat to their safety, then the driver is not required to complete the trip.
The operator will call DATS Dispatch and report that there is a threatening animal in your home or yard.
Dispatch will call and ask that you restrain the animal so that the operator can safely reach your residence.
If the animal is not restrained within a few minutes, Dispatch will advise you that DATS cannot complete your trip and a "no show" will be recorded on your registrant file.
If your animal attacks the operator, the operator will use whatever means is necessary to stop the attack.
Trip bookings privileges may be suspended until the operator's safety can be assured.
DATS notifies the City Pound of any dogs running loose in the vicinity. As well, if a passenger owns a dog that is considered to be restricted or vicious, DATS will notify City Bylaw Enforcement Officials.
DATS operators are required by law to transport "assistance" or "service" dogs accompanying people who are blind, deaf or otherwise disabled. Clients are required to provide the animal's ID card which verifies that the animal has been trained by a recognized school upon registration.
Assistance Dogs have been trained by recognized dog schools and aid or guide the visually impaired, hearing impaired or persons with other disabilities. An assistance dog can be recognized as follows:
- For the visually impaired by its leather harness and the identification card issued by a recognized dog school.
- For the hearing impaired by its bright orange leash and collar and/or vest and the identification card issued by a recognized dog school.
- For persons with other disabilities black harness and leash and sometimes blue saddle bags and the identification card issued by a recognized dog school.
Assistance dogs are trained to be non-threatening and unobtrusive. They do not require a seat as they are trained to sit under the owner's chair or at the owner's feet.
Other Assistance Animals and Pets
Occasionally an operator will encounter a passenger who wishes to bring an animal other than an assistance dog (i.e. an unusual assistance animal or a pet) on a DATS trip.
DATS will consider other types of assistance animals on a case-by-case basis.
Pets are not allowed on DATS. Passengers who wish to take their pets with them must arrange for other transportation.
What about allergies?
As a public transit provider, DATS cannot ensure that passengers with allergies will never be scheduled on vehicles carrying assistance dogs. If you have an allergy and find yourself frequently scheduled on a route with assistance dogs (i.e. every day), please contact us and we will attempt to reschedule your trip to another vehicle wherever possible. We suggest you bring allergy medication with you to deal with unexpected allergic reactions.
Restricted and Vicious Dogs
Restricted dogs must be muzzled and secured with a chain at all times when outside and not in pen to prevent them from attacking or biting.
Vicious dogs are handled on a case by case basis with City Bylaw Enforcement.