Focus on off-leash dogs

COUNCIL’S Animal Services and Parks Departments are joining forces to patrol Invercargill’s open spaces in a bid to reduce the number of dogs off leash.

The joint exercise is a result of more dog attack reports and sightings of dogs off leash in public places.

Animal Services Team Leader Kerry Kawe said: “There has been a rise in reported attacks recently, many of them at Sandy Point. Animal Services Officers will conduct additional random foot patrols in parks.”

Parks Asset Manager Graeme Davies said Parks staff would contribute to the joint operation by educating the public and helping with patrols. “Our staff will conduct regular patrols. If a Parks Ranger sees dogs off their leash in on-leash areas the owners will be advised they’re in an on-leash park. Parks staff will also They will also record the dog’s details and pass those on to Animal Services.”

Mr Kawe said the Dog Control Bylaw and information on Invercargill’s open spaces could be found on the dogs information on the Council’s website

“It is important people understand the Bylaw and know where dogs are prohibited from being off-leash. If people breach the Bylaw they can potentially face a $300 infringement fine. This goes for other types of infringements under the Bylaw such as failing to pick up your dog’s litter. People have a right to enjoy open spaces so be courteous to other users,” Mr Kawe said.

People who want to report a dog-related issue can call Council’s 24 -hour number (03) 211 1777.