Posted by Ruth Woodward
Western Bay of Plenty District Council is appealing for information from the public to help to identify a pack of dogs that is repeatedly attacking animals in the Snodgrass Road area of Te Puna.
In the last 12 months animal officers have responded to 21 incidents related to roaming dogs. These have included the killing of ducks, chicken, sheep, rabbits and the maiming of two cattle.
Of those 21 incidents officers have succeeded in solving all but four – and these four have been attacks by one pack of five dogs in the Snodgrass Road area in the past two months. Council has had seven humane cage traps set in the area but none has been successful.
Despite many communiques on Council’s Facebook page about these attacks and a number of responses from the public, including CCTV video of the pack working at night, no light has been shed on the dogs’ identity.
It’s extremely frustrating for those affected members of the public and Council’s animal services team that these dogs have not been identified. Council staff have been patrolling and placing humane cage traps in the area for months in response to repeated community concerns of roaming dogs and random attacks on people’s livestock.
Council’s Compliance and Monitoring Manager Alison Curtis says one of the main challenges is that officers cannot be in the area 24/7 and have not been in the area when the dogs are roaming – making it extremely hard to catch dogs in the act.
“We are appealing to all residents in the Snodgrass Road area to be vigilant and let Council know immediately if they see any stray dogs”.
“Often we don’t get an incident reported until the following day – but we really need to hear from people as soon as they see a dog roaming, hear something suspicious, see dogs fighting – no matter what – the only way are going to track down these dogs is to be Johnny on the spot – or getting photos of the offending dogs.”
As a result of quality information from local residents and the wider community Council has succeeded in:
• resolving and closing 17 of the 21 incidents
• 12 fines have been issued for the failure to control/register dog
• disqualifying one person from owning dogs due to multiple offences
• Two dogs impounded have been rehomed out of the area by their previous owner
• Four dogs impounded have been rehomed through Council’s adoption programme
• 14 educational visits have been made by animal control to dog owners’ homes
• Two dogs impounded have been euthanised due to failing temperament assessments
• Four dogs were impounded this week in Tangitu Road and enquiries are ongoing with fines being issued
• Eight owners whose stock have been attacked during the 12-month period have been reimbursed by the owners of the offending dogs.
We believe someone out there knows where these dogs are coming from. We plead that, should anyone have any information at all, please contact Council immediately on 0800 926 732 or email information/photos/videos to firstname.lastname@example.org