Neglect prompts new laws
STAGGERING rates of animal mismanagement have prompted the Southern Downs Regional Council to introduce new “animal removal” laws for non-compliant owners, giving the council power to seize and, in some cases, destroy animals when owners fail to comply with regulations.
A removal notice may be issued when an owner has been unresponsive to compliance notices. The laws will require owners or authorised persons to permanently remove the animal from a specified area or destroy it in cases where the animal is unsuitable to rehome or has serious health issues.
Southern Downs Mayor Tracy Dobie said removal notices were a necessary last resort.
“Giving someone a compliance notice and people not complying doesn’t achieve anything,” Cr Dobie said.
Southern Downs ARK president and animal rescue officer Ann Simon said the laws might go some way to reducing the rate of animal neglect.
In three years, Southern Downs ARK has rescued about 280 dogs and 2500 cats from the Southern Downs region.