Roaming uncontrolled dogs and dog size, is an increasing problem in Wet Tropics World Heritage Rainforest

Date: 17 January 2017
Submitted by: Ingrid Marker, Cassowary Keystone Conservation

Roaming dogs are a threatening our communities feeling of safety, in our streets, towns, beaches and parklands. People have a right to move freely, without fear of being menaced or attacked by roaming uncontrolled dogs. Nuisance dogs break down relationships of friends and neighbours, causing division within the community. Many people are silent victims, afraid of reprisals from  abusive dog owners, (who could be there neighbours), this can lead to undue stress and mental health issues.

This threat extends into the Wet Tropics World Heritage Rainforest that many of our iconic endangered species call home, including the Southern Cassowary. We have a Billion $ Tourism Industry which employs thousands of local people. We proudly showcase our precious and fragile ecosystem to a domestic and international audience. But there are lost hunting dogs within this environment that have the potential to be a dangerous feral pest.  Much like feral cats are a wiping out many native species, lost dogs particularly hunting dogs in a pack are a threat to human safety as well as wildlife survival.

Roaming dogs are the cause of our “Wild Dog” problem costing Australian’s $65 Million annually to manage the wild dog fence, this is the longest fence in the world fragmenting the landscape. Lost domestic dogs (wild dogs) are a major agricultural problem, resulting in thousands of livestock mauled to death leading to financial and emotion despair for farmers. 1080 poison is used to control wild dogs this is a cruel and painful death also killing our native dingo and other non target species.

This campaign aims to educate the community about responsible dog ownership and the various dangerous threats that roaming/ lost dogs create to our safety, lifestyle and economy. We have a moral duty and international obligations to control domestic dogs to protect the community and  save endangered species living within our World Heritage.

WE aim seek changes, to tighten and enforce the Animal Management Act on a State level and within local Councils with a Private Members Bill the “Domestic Predatory Animal Act”

“If you own a dog you are 100% responsible”

There are three known threats to the Southern Cassowary survival as a species.

Cassowary Keystone Conservation works with and supports other local groups to turn the tide by.

  • Planting trees to restore habitat connectivity
  • Working with Main roads on road design and speed limits to reduce car strike and redesigning roads that fragment landscapes
  • We have created a system of First Response Cassowary Rescue.
  • We have written a Private Members Bill called the “Domestic Predatory Animals Act”.