LOCAL governments are going to be asked to have their say on pushing for tougher restrictions on dangerous dog breeds including banning and sterilisation.
The WA Local Government Association will seek feedback from councils over the coming months with a view to developing a range of ideas to discuss with the state government to deal with the serious problem of vicious dog attacks.
WALGA president Troy Pickard welcomed the recent announcement to introduce a Dog Amendment Bill to the coming session of Parliament, however any new legislation would need to reflect current community expectations.
“The recent spate of vicious dog attacks is appalling and our sympathy goes out to the families affected,” Cr Pickard said.
“It highlights to most that dog control laws that have not been changed for more than 35 years are clearly out of date and out of step with current community expectations.”
Most recently local government and WALGA had responded to state government reviews of the Dog Act in 2004 and again in 2007 only for the process to stall at the Parliamentary stage.
Cr Pickard said it was critical that this time the state government followed through on ensuring the community was protected from dangerous breeds and irresponsible owners.
“I welcome the announcement by the minister that he intends to introduce a Dog Amendment Bill to the coming session of Parliament,” he said.
“It is encouraging that his proposed amendments will consider prohibiting the availability, breeding and sale of dangerous breeds and sterilisation of dangerous breeds along with increased penalties for irresponsible owners and powers for local rangers.
“Revisions to the Dog Act to deal more effectively with vicious dogs have been on the agenda of state governments for years and it is time to do something about it, before another innocent person or family pet is seriously mauled or killed.”