Debates have swirled for years in Montreal about how to best update the city's animal control by-laws.

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Under mayor Denis Coderre, the city nearly passed a total ban on pit bulls. Fortunately, huge public outcry forced officials to abandon those plans.

The administration of mayor Valérie Plante redoubled efforts to reform those by-laws.

News broke this summer that the city would finally ban its famous caléches, horse-drawn carriages, that carry tourists around the Old Port. 

Today those plans have become law. The Montreal city council overwhelmingly passed the new measures.

In place of a ban on pit bulls, the city has opted for more restrictions on dogs that are "potentially dangerous" without pointing to a specific breed, according to Radio-Canada. Of course, this opens the possibility for certain breeds with often misguided reputations for violence to be profiled.

But perhaps more concerning to dog-owners is the new registry of dangerous dogs. Radio-Canada reports that dogs that receive infractions for violent or threatening behaviour will be entered onto a public watch list. There's no word about how a dog-owner could possibly appeal that designation or eventually remove their dog from the list.

This latest news comes after a dog that police described as a pit bull in an official report attacked children in Montreal North. Officials decided today that that dog will be put down.

These new rules are sure to generate controversy. 

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