DOG owners in Shire of Mundaring could face hefty fines if they fail to follow new dog laws.
They will be required to provide ‘escape-proof’ fencing at their property and under the local law, only two dogs may be kept on each property.
People may apply for an exemption.
Owners who currently have more than two dogs on a property are advised the limit on numbers is not retrospective.
The Dogs Local Law 2017 approved by council strengthens the existing law in line with the Dog Act 1976 and the Local Government Act 1995.
Shire president John Daw said councillors recently approved the new laws.
“Unfortunately our Shire has one of the highest numbers of incidents of reported dog attacks,” he said.
Shire records show 119 dog attacks were reported from January to November in 2017 compared to 120 the same time in 2016 and 146 in 2015.
The Shire can impose penalties on the owner of a dog found to attack a person or another dog under the Dog Act 1976 and Dog Regulations 2013.
Dog owners are liable for a fine of $400 where an attack or chase causes injury and $200 without injury.
The Shire successfully prosecuted two cases in 2017, 12 in 2016 and 10 in 2015.
Cr Daw said dogs found wandering have escalated this year, with an increasing number of photographs of lost dogs appearing on the pages of social media sites.
“The new laws incorporate several strategies, which we hope will reduce the number of dogs found wandering and also the amount of attacks.”
The new local dog laws increases the fine from $50 to $200 for people who do not clean up after their dog in public places.
“We believe that children should not have to play sport among dog droppings,” Cr Daw said.
“Similarly, families picnicking in some of our local reserves and parks should be able to do so without having to contend with mess left by other people’s dogs.
“The Shire provides plastic bags specifically for this purpose.”
Copies of the new dog laws are available at www.mundaring.wa.gov.au, in libraries and at the Shire’s Administration Building in Mundaring.