Wilton residents oppose dog kennel proposal

Neighbors of a proposed dog kennel at 213 Danbury Road urged the Planning and Zoning Commission to reject the plan during its meeting Monday night.

“My concern is the noise from the barking,” said neighbor Lisa Goldberg. “I might not hear the barking, but my dogs would, because they can hear better than humans, and they’d be barking all night and all day.”

Animal residue runoff from the property when it rains was another concern.

It was the perfect night to make the point. There was a heavy rainstorm just before the meeting started at 7:30 p.m. in the Town Hall Annex.

“We get a rainstorm like this, where does the waste go?” said attorney Alan Spirer. “It spreads, it doesn’t go underground.”

Spirer said he was representing clients from the neighborhood opposed to the plan, but did not say who those clients were. A planning staffer later said Spirer was representing the Wilton Hospital For Animals at 215 Danbury Road.

Another neighbor, Dan Fortin, said 118 dogs on three-quarters of an acre is too much, and the noise would be “too loud” and bad for the neighborhood. Fortin's wife Laurel also expressed opposition.

The proposal is from Alexandre Desmarais, owner of the Best Friends Total Pet Care in Norwalk. Desmarais could not give specifics at the meeting, but published reports indicate he wants to expand at 213 Danbury Road with a 2,000 square-foot veterinary facility, and a 120 unit, 11,130.9-square-foot pet storage building.

At the meeting, Desmarais promised to build a sound-blocking fence around the yard to prevent barking noises from reaching neighbors. He promised to do whatever it takes to satisfy neighbors so he can operate his business on three-quarters of an acre.

“We don’t like when our neighbors are not happy. That is not our way of doing business,” Desmarais told the commission.

The commission is expected to deliberate and vote on the proposal at a future meeting.