Some issues just do not go away. Dogs that are dangerous or potentially dangerous is such a topic.
Recently we have had yet another report in the media of an attack by dogs. In this case a dog owner had left her dog in the backyard to go shopping only to return to find that her much-loved pet had been attacked and killed by neighbour’s dogs.
There are so many things wrong with how the ACT government handled this situation – and other cases like it in recent times.
The government seems to be taking the softly-softly approach in situations where the danger to people and other animals has become obvious.
I have posted before on dogs, the wetlands and how it is a free-range off-leash dog park.
The main point I make is that this situation has been allowed to evolve by the ACT Government.
Are they prepared to take responsibility when yet another person gets hurt and/or another animal is mauled – and the aggrieved person decides to sue the government?
A quick tangent to make a point: In the case of the use of mobile phones while driving, the law has been made very clear. Don’t touch that phone. The police have a hell of a job catching the silly people who still do it. This point was made very clear with the release of this excellent small movie – definitely worth watching.
The major point I take from that above is the levels of denial. Those involved, those who use/touch their phone, deny that they are doing it or worse still acknowledge that they are doing it but that they are more than capable of driving and using the phone. The levels of denial are beyond belief – but sadly very common.
Talk to any of the dog owners who have nuisance dogs, or worse – potentially dangerous dogs, and you will hear a logic of denial along the lines of: It is now accepted by society that we have pet dogs and that everyone should adjust to their existence – and bedsides, my dog would never do such a thing.
For instance recently a couple were confronted by a large dog and had to quickly take action to remove their own small dog from the in-coming monster who looked ready to attack. The response from the larger-dog owner, ‘you should have lifted your dog out of the way sooner and then there would not have been a problem.
A couple of us have observed one dog owner – with three small dogs, who wanders around the wetlands paying little attention to where her three ‘babies’ are wandering. The trouble is we know of another dog owner with three very aggressive ‘bull-terrier’ like dogs that also wander free while the owner is busy on the phone, texting or whatever. We dread the day when these two owners – or more to the point – their dogs meet up.
We have the situation whereby dangerous dogs exist in neighbourhoods and here in Dickson, roam free on the wetlands – being designated as off-leash means – that means it is a non-fenced free-range dog park any time of the day.
The situation with the wetlands is a case study of the lax approach by this government.
Given the regularity of these incidents across Canberra and the high profile reporting of them in various media, one would have expected that he ACT Government would have long ago identified with this issue and to taken very serious steps to have dogs removed from neighbourhoods and public spaces once they have been judged to be dangerous.
At the moment the ACT Government – the Minister and probably the chief bureaucrats – have put themselves in the situation of being possibly being viewed as being ‘Willfully Blind’ in that they are allowing a situation to continue that is clearly dangerous.
Dogs are part of our society and for non-dog owners this is OK as long as dog owner’s life option (having a dog) does not interfere with everyone else’s. More to point of the story of the recent incident, the many dangerous dogs in Canberra are not just a danger to people – but also potentially dangerous to everyone else’s pets.
Ultimately because the government has refused to bring on a change to the legislation, it remains that in Canberra any pet dog is at serious danger as result of the ‘Willful Blindness’ of the ACT Government.
The real danger here to your much loved pet is the inaction of ACT Government.
I was sent this link to a story about how a council deals with dangerous dogs – and their owners. If they can do this – why not the ACT Government?