Sunday, March 13, 2011

Knox City weighs tougher dog laws

By Michael Gleeson, Knox Leader

KNOX Council is considering tightening its dog laws as attacks across the city continue.
Eighty-two attacks have been reported in Knox since August, an average of more than 10 a month.
Two incidents one involving an Australian kelpie cross and the other a pit bull rottweiler cross have been successfully prosecuted during that time.
Council acting director of corporate development Rod McKail said a further three attacks were under investigation with court action pending.
He said local laws officers had been given power to issue fines for minor dog attacks, and the council would be reviewing all local dog laws.
RSPCA state president Hugh Wirth said amendments to pet laws in December made it much easier for councils to investigate and press charges following dog attacks in public areas.
“There are no roadblocks now to prosecuting public dog attacks. We expect local councils to do what is needed,” Dr Wirth said.
“If the Knox community, or any other community for that matter, feels their municipality is not doing their job, they need to go to the state ombudsman,” he added.
But Dr Wirth said the amendments did nothing for incidents in private homes that account for about 80 per cent of dog attacks.
He said the attack epidemic was an issue that refused to go away.
Dog attacks in Knox reached a high last August when 20 were reported.

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