Council for the Rural Municipality of Hanover has made a decision regarding a proposed dog breeding kennel northeast of Mitchell.

Johann Thiessen appeared before council earlier this month proposing to establish a dog breeding kennel on his four-and-a-half acre lot along Road 37N. He explained to council plans to purchase an existing breeding operation from an approved breeder in Hanover who is moving out of the country. There are currently no breeding dogs on this property and Thiessen says he would have to build proper housing facilities for the animals. Thiessen requested permission to have up to fifteen adult dogs. These would be a variety of Golden Retrievers, Bernese Mountain Dogs and English Bulldogs.

Hanover council Wednesday voted in favour of a breeding operation but with conditions. Reeve Stan Toews says instead of fifteen adult dogs, Thiessen will be allowed no more than four. And Thiessen will be allowed only a single breed. In explaining council's decision, Toews says there is only one neighbour in close proximity. Furthermore, he says this comes from an existing breeding operation within the municipality and so in reality it's simply moving from one location to another.

According to Toews, the application generated a fair bit of concern. "Concerns are that there are too many dogs already," he says. "And if people don't look after them it would become a puppy mill."

Barry Piasta, founder of contacted stating when he first learned of the proposal, his reaction was one of shock, awe, fear and great concern. He says the southeast is already overpopulated with dogs and this operation would make Hanover the Puppy Mill Capital of Manitoba.

Toews acknowledges council took the concerns of the public into consideration when making its decision.

In addition to the limits on adult dogs and breeds, Thiessen will also be required to have the operation inspected prior to opening, and the operation will need to be inspected annually by a veterinarian.