September 7, 2022
Gunnedah Shire’s cats and dogs will now travel in greater safety and comfort, thanks to Council’s new specialised animal control vehicles.
The new vehicles for Council’s Regulatory Services feature a custom body that complies with contemporary animal welfare standards and legislation, and seized companion animals can now be transported in well-ventilated compartments, separating them safely and protecting them from the extremes of weather.
The vehicles also include a pull-out ramp so dogs can be walked into a compartment rather than putting staff and animal at risk of injury through lifting and jumping.
The vehicles are fitted to carry a range of equipment and stores used by Council’s compliance officers in their other duties such as development compliance and investigating illegal dumping.
“The introduction of these fit-for-purpose vehicles reduces the risk of injury to staff and animals,” Council’s Regulatory Services Coordinator Wade Berryman said.
“Each vehicle is now complete with a range of equipment that can be safely stored and carried and increases the amount of time officers can deliver services to customers across the Shire.”
The vehicles display images from Council’s Paws Up campaign, which encourages pet owners to desex, microchip and register their companion animals.
Mr Berryman said this was a vital part of pet ownership and it would help to reduce the amount of dogs and cats in Council’s care if companion animals could be easily reunited with their owners.
“To date, more than 40 dogs and 15 cats have been seized or surrendered in this financial year,” he said.
“In the last financial year, there was a 100 per cent increase in the number of dogs seized and surrendered, and a 137 per cent increase in the number of cats. These sorts of increases are being reported across the state and are attributed to a rapid uptake in pet ownership during the COVID-19 pandemic and isolation regimes. With a return to post-COVID-19 normality, these same pets and litters are now being dumped or surrendered.
“Favourable seasonable conditions have also contributed to an increase in the number of feral cat litters. Feral cats make up the majority of felines seized by Council.
“Ninety-eight per cent of dogs seized or surrendered in the last financial year were reunited with their owners or rehomed, but this requires considerable time and resources.”
For more information on desexing, microchipping and registering companion animals, visit Council’s website: https://www.gunnedah.nsw.gov.au/index.php/environment/pets-animals
Gunnedah Shire Council’s new animal control vehicles display images from Council’s Paws Up campaign, which encourages pet owners to desex, microchip and register their companion animals.
Gunnedah Shire Council’s new animal control vehicles feature a pull-out ramp so dogs can be walked into a compartment rather than putting staff and animal at risk of injury through lifting and jumping.
For more information, contact Gunnedah Shire Council’s Communications team on (02) 6740 2100.