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June 20, 2024

Owner of menacing dog fined over Federal attack

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Byron Shire Council has won a court case against a dog-owner whose pet bit another dog while unmuzzled and off the leash, despite already having been warned about his animal.

The man, from Federal, has been convicted of being in charge of a menacing dog that attacked another dog and ordered to pay Byron Shire Council’s legal costs, a fine and compensation totalling $1,500.

The attack happened near the Federal Hall just before 8:30am on August 15 when the dog, an American Staffordshire terrier, attacked another dog, a Spoodle, being walked on a leash.

The Council’s legal services coordinator, Ralph James, said the dog bit the Spoodle on the ear, the neck and on the back.

‘The court at Mullumbimby heard the attacking dog was not secured on a leash nor was it wearing a muzzle,’ Mr James said.

‘This animal is known to Byron Shire Council as it was declared “menacing” in 2014, and this means the owner is required to muzzle the dog, keep it on a leash when in public places and ensure it is in the control of a responsible adult,’ he said.

‘It was a frightening incident for the other person involved and it’s important for people to know there are very harsh penalties in place for the owners of dogs who are menacing and dangerous,’ he said.

‘Aside from paying the council’s legal costs and a fine, the defendant also has to pay a $450 vet bill for the injured Spoodle.

‘The maximum penalties for dog-related offences under the Companion Animals Act is a fine of up to $70,000 and a gaol term of up to five years,’ Mr James said.

For more information call Malcolm Hamilton, Animal Enforcement Officer at Byron Shire Council, on 6626 7000.

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