New data that shows the number of reported dog attacks in Canberra has increased by 422 per cent demonstrates why we need better laws to manage dangerous dogs, Shadow Minister for Urban Services Nicole Lawder said.
In 2017-18, 485 dog attacks were reported to Domestic Animal Services, according to government figures released this week. Five years ago, there were only 93 reported dog attack incidents in 2013-14.
In the calendar year to September 2, 154 dogs were seized after a dog attack. Of these, 78 were declared dangerous, or released on control orders or euthanised.
"This staggering increase in the number of dog attacks should cause concern for the government," Ms Lawder said.
"It explains why an increasing number of Canberrans are raising concerns about dog attacks.
"Canberrans and their pets continue to suffer as a consequence of the continued lack of effective dog management by the Labor-Greens government.
"Year after year the number of dog attacks increases, demonstrating why we need to deal seriously with the issue of poor dog management.
"We want Canberrans to feel safe when they walk their dogs around their suburb or at the park. They shouldn’t have to be fearful of being attacked.
"We need better laws to ensure dog attacks do not go unaccounted.
"I was pleased to present the first tranche of the Canberra Liberals proposed animal welfare laws to the Assembly this week.
"With our laws, dog rangers would be better placed to respond appropriately to each of these 485 dog attacks.
"I urge the government to review the Canberra Liberals’ proposed animal welfare closely," Ms Lawder concluded.
Interested Canberrans and stakeholders can provide feedback on Ms Lawder’s proposed laws at www.haveyoursay.net.au/dog-attacks/ or on the ACT Legislative Register.