THE latest statistics indicating Orange has three times more dog attacks than Bathurst prove the problem needs a greater solution than simply saying dog owners must be educated about their obligations.
Despite many years of the Orange RSPCA fund-raising and putting money into desexing and microchipping programs, the efforts of the organisation, along with Orange City Council, have been thwarted by dog owners who aren’t doing the right thing.
The recent Million Paws Walk is a classic example of how education programs are preaching to the converted, as responsible dog owners come out in force to raise yet more funds to address a problem caused by people who do not care about their animals, their control or their obligation to the community.
The RSPCA and responsible pet owners who are prepared to raise funds for these education programs must surely be frustrated by the latest figures showing 25 dog attacks in Orange compared to seven in Bathurst.
Irresponsible dog owners are not going to read brochures or turn up to information sessions, so there needs to be a serious focus on new strategies.
Perhaps we need to put the same amount of resources into patrolling the streets for unruly dogs and their irresponsible owners as we do to patrolling the car parks and streets to book drivers who have parked over the time limit.
Orange’s dog problem is a ticking bomb.
Many Orange residents still bear the scars of savage attacks in recent years, including a young boy and a young woman whose work prospects have been severely limited due to her injuries.
Yet Orange’s dog attacks continue to climb.