Dungog Shire Council is reminding residents to take responsibility for their pets and keep their dogs safe and secure after a recent increase in reported dog attacks.
Council has received seven reports of dog attacks in the past eight weeks.
These attacks resulted in the hospitalisation of two people, veterinary surgery for one dog and the death of another animal.
In investigating each report, council has issued several fines to the dog owners involved, including one fine of $1320 to the owner of a particularly vicious attacking dog.
Council’s Compliance Officer, Michelle Crook, says the amount of dog related complaints council receives has been unusually high in recent months.
“The recent increase in dog related complaints and incidents is disappointing, especially for pet owners in the shire who are doing the right thing,” says Miss Crook.
“Keeping your dog secure when at home and under control at all times when in public is an important responsibility all dog owners share.
“We have also received reports of stray dogs roaming and many of them, as well as the dogs involved in the recent attacks, had out-of-date microchips and were not lifetime registered.
“In one incident a dog roaming was hit by a car and was missing for over an hour while requiring veterinary treatment for injuries sustained.
“We are taking this opportunity to remind all residents to keep their dogs secure, and that both dogs and cats are required to be microchipped and lifetime registered.
“If a dog is found wandering on the street with an out-of-date microchip or no microchip at all, the animal will be impounded immediately; however, animals that are microchipped can be returned to their owners or re-homed when appropriate, to live long and happy lives.”