Owners of dangerous dogs brought to justice in Bendigo, prompting trainers to demand tougher local laws
Greater Bendigo dog owners are urged by council to be extra vigilant after several dog attacks end up in court.
- The city of Greater Bendigo has issued a new warning to dog owners to ensure their pets are kept on a leash.
- It comes after two people were brought to justice for dangerous dog attacks.
- A dog trainer in Bendigo wants local laws to crack down on dogs on a leash.
A man working on a construction site roamed his unregistered Staghound-cross dog and chased a cat to another house where he was killed.
The owner was forced to pay the costs associated with cleaning the area, replacing a broken lamp, and purchasing a new kitten.
He also received a six-month conduct bond and pleaded guilty to causing the cat’s death to his dog and failing to register the dog.
In a second hearing, a woman was walking two American Bulldogs off-leash through the bush in Flora Hill when her dogs attacked two golden retrievers.
The owner was convicted, fined $ 2,000, and prohibited from owning or being responsible for the dog declared dangerous for a period of five years.
Samuel Johnston of the council’s investigative team said there were around 180 reports of dog attacks a year and six in ten end up in court.
That’s over 26,000 registered dogs and cats in the city.
“If people walk their dogs off leash, consequences can arise if they charge or attack another animal,” said Mr. Johnston.
“If your animals are properly restrained, you can avoid an outcome such as being in front of a magistrate or even just the stress of being involved in an attack.”
Calls for stricter local laws
Bendigo dog trainer Tristen Canfield wants dogs to be on a leash mandatory, except in designated off-leash areas.
“The council should use the staff to monitor and control this, instead of controlling the incidents. Let’s go before it gets in the way of someone’s well-being,” she said.
Current council laws allow dogs off leash in certain areas if the owner is able to use their voice to remind the animal.
“The reality is that off-leash dogs cannot be guaranteed that they won’t have the opportunity to run away to check on something.”
Ms Canfield said she would have liked to see stricter rules for trails in the council’s latest pet management plan.
“I’m really disappointed that a simple small change to having dogs on a leash except in designated areas was not made. It would have a significant impact on the dog attack and harassment statistics.”