THE DUBLIN society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (DSPCA) has offered to microchip and neuter at cost all dogs banned by Dublin City Council as an alternative to forcing dog owners to get rid of their family pets.
The Dublin Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals said providing a microchipping and owner-tracing service was a far better solution than an outright ban on specific breeds.
It is offering to microchip all 11 breeds and cross-breeds on the list for a nominal 6 euros (£4) fee and maintain a database of microchipped dogs and their owners on behalf of Dublin City Council tenants.
Each dog will also be given a collar disc that includes details of the microchip implant so that dog wardens supplied with a microchip scanner can immediately identify any potentially dangerous dog that is roaming around or is otherwise a threat to the public, said DSPCA general manager Jimmy Cahill.
The service, which would normally cost more than 50 euros (£33) through a veterinarian, will be provided through the DSPCA's mobile clinic, which will also provide a subsidised neutering scheme for the listed dogs. ‘I think it's a reasonable solution. The offer is there and we're willing to help,’ Mr Cahill said.
The controversial ban has led to the DSPCA and the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals being flooded with calls from angry and distraught dog owners who are devastated with the prospect of having to get rid of their family pets or face eviction.
Both animal welfare groups, as well as the Irish Kennel Club, are opposed to the ban and have requested an emergency meeting with Dublin City Manager John Tierney to either reconsider the ban or consider their microchipping offer.
They are also urging dog owners not to put down or give away their dogs until a compromise can be reached.
They argue that while vicious dogs are a threat to the public, the ban on specific breeds will do little to prevent irresponsible owners from continuing to use fighting dogs as weapons.
The microchipping scheme, coupled with mandatory registration of dog owners, would allow dog wardens to trace all potentially dangerous dogs to their owners.
The scheme would also readily distinguish responsible pet owners from the thugs who purposely train or abuse their dogs to be aggressive in order to use them as weapons, he added.
Yet despite the public outcry that has followed the ban, the city council is sticking to its guns despite some reports to the contrary, a council spokesman said this week.
All existing and new council tenants who own a dog on the list are required to put down or rehouse their dog as a condition of their tenancy, he said.
‘The dogs are banned and where we receive complaints the dog warden will be summoned,’ he added.