Have a say on pro­posed by­law

Central Otago Mirror - - NEWS -

Dogs in pub­lic ar­eas in Queen­stown and Wanaka will have to be kept on a leash un­less in des­ig­nated dog ex­er­cise ar­eas if a new dog con­trol by­law goes ahead.

The by­law was ap­proved for pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion by the Queen­stown Lakes District Coun­cil at its meet­ing in Wanaka last week.

Among the key changes pro­posed is that dogs must be kept on leashes in pub­lic places ex­cept in ru­ral gen­eral zones (un­less at a ceme­tery or play­ground) or any dog ex­er­cise area.

Coun­cil reg­u­la­tory man­ager Lee Web­ster said it would still be pos­si­ble to let dogs off leads on tracks such as Lake Hayes and many re­serves where dogs are ex­er­cised. But there would be more free­dom to take dogs – on a lead – into ar­eas where they were were pre­vi­ously banned, such as Queen­stown Mall.

Other changes in­clude: ◗ All dogs clas­si­fied as men­ac­ing to be neutered; ◗ Any pro­ba­tion­ary and disqual­i­fied own­ers shall be clas­si­fied for the max­i­mum pe­riod un­less they can sat­isfy the coun­cil the full pe­riod is un­nec­es­sary; ◗ The cri­te­ria for is­su­ing mul­ti­ple dog li­cences has been clar­i­fied and are is­sued for a pe­riod of five years; and ◗ Fees for dog reg­is­tra­tion have changed to recog­nise and re­ward be­hav­iour that com­plies with the Dog Con­trol Act 1996. Web­ster said most dog own­ers will find their fees will drop a lit­tle, up to 15 per cent. ‘‘Where it will go up will be for dog own­ers with dogs who have been clas­si­fied as men­ac­ing or dan­ger­ous.’’ It fol­lows an on­line sur­vey re­gard­ing dog con­trol un­der­taken ear­lier this year. There were 985 com­pleted sur­veys re­ceived, with 44 per cent of re­sponses stat­ing that dogs should not be free to roam. Eighty-seven per cent sup­ported re­stric­tions re­gard­ing the num­ber of dogs that could be kept at a property. Two-thirds of re­spon­dents liked the con­cept of a des­ig­nated dog ex­er­cise area, with 54 per cent sup­port­ing a com­bined method of pay­ing for this fa­cil­ity through dog reg­is­tra­tion and rates. It was pro­posed the coun­cil con­sider des­ig­nated ar­eas over time. The by­law will be open for pub­lic sub­mis­sions next week.

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