There is good news for dog owners coming out of the Fraser Coast Regional Council’s budget for the 2021/22 financial year.
Local dog owners are being offered an incentive to ensure their pets are desexed and microchipped.
Division 3 Councillor Paul Truscott said the annual registration fee for desexed and microchipped dogs would be just $30 for the next financial year.
“Having a dog can provide a lot of enjoyment and companionship but also comes with commitments and responsibilities, including ensuring they are registered every year,” Cr Truscott said.
“We’ve been heartened by the fact that the number of dogs registered in the region has increased from about 14,000 to more than 20,000 over the past four years.
“Council encourages local residents to keep doing the right thing by ensuring their dogs are registered, desexed and microchipped, and that their details are up to date.”
Cr Truscott told reporters this week that ensuring dogs are microchipped made it much easier to reunite them with their families should they manage to escape their homes and get found wondering the streets.
He stressed dogs must be desexed and microchipped for owners to benefit from the incentive.
“The $30 fee for desexed and microchipped dogs will be the lowest of all the different dog registration categories, aside from working/assistance dogs which don’t attract a fee.
The registration fees help fund Council’s animal management operations – including compliance inspections, dog attack investigations, the running of animal pounds and the adoption centre, fenced off-leash areas and responsible pet care programs.
Cr Truscott said Council would continue to offer free first year dog registration to encourage residents to register their animals. Dog registration renewal notices reflecting the new fee structure are set to be issued in October.
It is compulsory for dogs to be registered with Council from twelve weeks of age and within 14 days of owners moving to the Fraser Coast region. Dogs also need to be desexed before 22 weeks of age.
Division 5 Councillor Jade Wellings emphasised the importance of microchipping dogs.
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She said rangers out in the field could easily identify an animal’s owner by checking the chip and returning it to the correct property without having to go via the pound.
Cr Wellings said this would ultimately save owners money, as they would not need to pay to release fees.
“Having dogs desexed will also help reduce the number of unwanted dogs on the Fraser Coast,” she said.
Meanwhile, Cr Wellings urged residents who’re looking for pets to visit the Fraser Coast Adoption Centre.
“The experience of coming to adopt a dog means that dog gets a second chance with a family that can love it and the shorter amount of time we can have dogs staying in the boarding kennels the better for them and their well-being.”
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