A council-run pound in western New South Wales has come under a second investigation over the mistreatment of several sick dogs and puppies.
Readers are advised that this article contains sad content.
- The Bourke Shire Council pound has been accused of animal cruelty and failing to provide adequate care
- The allegations come after volunteers collected nine dogs and puppies from a council pound in February.
- The council denies the allegations
Bourke Shire Council has been accused of animal cruelty and failing to fulfill its duty of care in a new complaint against the NSW Government and RSPCA NSW.
The claim, which the council strongly denied, came after two volunteers from the Corporation for Animal Rescue and Education (DARE) went to the pound in February to pick up nine dogs and puppies.
Dogs covered in feces and ticks
In a complaint heard by the ABC, Animal Liberation found that all but one of the nine dogs were infected with parvovirus, had faeces and other health problems.
They said Fleur, a border collie, had been lying in her litter for three weeks with the pound, unable to stand.
Six-month-old Bellatrix is believed to have been described as “very aggressive” by a ranger who used a skid steer to lead the pup to a rescue van.
In their complaint to the council, they said the dog refused to walk and fell to the ground, so the inspector had to drag the puppy into the van by “sliding down its throat like a pure slip” before lifting it into the van. nose”.
The complaint also calls into question the care of the council pound after Fleur weighed at least 3kg and two other dogs appeared to be underweight despite having been at the pound for several weeks.
The council denies the allegations
Bourke Shire Council denied the animal rescuers’ claims and said it had responded to the minister and the animal welfare agency.
The council’s acting general manager Ross Earle said they were “disappointed” to receive the complaint.
“The council checked [the matter] and we have responded to the complainant on all the issues raised,” he said.
“The council, of course, denies the complainant’s allegations.”
RSPCA NSW says its investigation is ongoing.
Under the law, individuals can be fined up to $44,000 and jailed for 12 months for each act of cruelty, while corporations can be fined up to $220,000.
“Lack of Caring”
DARE President Micah Lala said the charity has left $26,000 for emergency veterinary care, including hospitalization, for all nine dogs.
“As for the country pound, they certainly won’t be in great shape; we see it all the time,” he said.
“But there are rules in NSW.
“What angers us is the lack of care, the lack of policies and procedures, which resulted in all but one dog contracting a preventable fatal virus.”
The country is in turmoil
It’s not the first time Bourke Shire Council’s pound has come under scrutiny.
The pound made international headlines in August 2021 when 15 dogs and puppies were euthanized after the facility was unable to rehome them due to COVID-19 restrictions.
About 24,000 dogs are surrendered to council pounds each year, but according to NSW local government, 91 per cent of dogs are returned to their owners, rehomed or sold.
The local government department is currently reviewing the home’s recovery practices, with a final report due in the coming months.
Local Government NSW has launched a proposal calling for improvements to companion animal regulations and funding and resources to enable councils to meet animal rehoming requirements.
Nine dogs collected by DARE were placed in foster care and all were adopted.
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