DANGER DOGS ON HIT LIST
THE number of dogs declared dangerous has more than tripled in 12 months as Townsville City Council cracks down on canines putting public safety at risk.
In the past financial year 37 dogs were declared dangerous compared to nine in the 2015- 16 year. So far this year 304 dog attacks have been reported to the council, which includes attacks on people and other dogs.
The figures show a slight reduction compared to this time last year when 319 attacks had been reported.
Community Health and Environment Committee chairwoman Cr Ann- Maree Greaney said the council needed to send a strong message to dog owners.
“The council is coming down hard on how dog attacks are managed, and owners of dogs that do the wrong thing are on notice,” she said.
“We know that most dog owners are responsible and do the right thing, but there are still too many attacks in the city, and too many reports of roaming dogs which are the main cause of trouble.” The council’s stance follows a spate of horrific attacks.
On June 16 a man was bitten on the neck and his pomeranian cross killed while he was walking his dogs at Bluewater. Only three days earlier a labrador was attacked while on a morning walk with its owner in South Townsville and required emergency surgery.
On June 7, a Mount Louisa family woke to find their dog in their yard with puncture wounds that were so serious the dog had to be euthanased.
Cr Greaney said owners whose dogs attacked people or other dogs could face harsh penalties including having their pet put down.
“The recent attack at Bluewater showed there can be serious consequences when dogs get out, and in this instance the dogs were destroyed,” she said. “The best way dog owners can protect the community is to ensure their dogs are properly secured at all times. Having a dog that is declared as dangerous places a serious impost on the owner as major upgrades need to be made to their dog enclosures, as well as pay a large increase in registration.”
SHARI UNLEASHES ON DOG ATTACKS: PAGE 26