Dumped dogs cost taxpayer €30k

89 dogs were rescued in January

By Geraldine Gittens

Monday February 08 2010

Dogs bought as Christmas gifts and then later abandoned cost Dublin City Council almost €30,000 last month.

Some 89 dogs were rescued by the Dog Warden and Pound Service in January, at a cost of €29,090.42 to the taxpayer.

The council spent €367,718.28 throughout 2009, as unwanted and stray dogs had to be rescued around the city. Dublin councillors have expressed concern over the amount spent on the pound service.

Cllr Christy Burke called for microchipping for all animals in the city, so that owners could be billed the cost of treating their animal.

He said: “Every dog should be microchipped and the people who are responsible should pay the price. If people do that while we’ve to spend money, they have to pay the price.

“That €30,000 could go on funding school meals, Meals on Wheels, and the disabled person’s grants. It’d go a long way.”

Education

“It’s appalling to have to spend that amount of money while people who abandon dogs during the month of January walk away scot-free,” stressed Cllr Burke. Councillors have also called for prevention of the crisis through education, so that vital funds can be spent elsewhere.

Cllr Dessie Ellis, who represents Finglas, said: “It’s down to getting people educated that animals need to be treated in a humane way.

“If it could be prevented, well and good. The council has a lot of other areas where the money could be spent.” However, he stressed that the council’s pound service needed to be commended because it had saved so many animals.

Cllr Bill Tormey from Fine Gael has suggested that Dublin City Council run a television ad campaign before next Christmas to convey to people that they must take care of pets.

hnews@herald.ie

– Geraldine Gittens