Beloved pet "Mr Kitty" mauled to death in dog attack
HAYLEY Maras wasn't too concerned when her beloved cat Mr Kitty didn't turn up for dinner last Wednesday night. By Friday, she decided something was wrong.
She door-knocked a couple of people in streets surrounding her Louisa Lane home, and posted on a Facebook site for lost pets.
On Saturday night she got word from her next-door neighbour, one of the only people she hadn't door-knocked, with the bad news.
"She told me they had found him dead and they'd buried him in their backyard," a heartbroken Ms Maras said.
Mr Kitty was an 18 month old ginger RSPCA orphan.
Ms Maras said he had a very friendly and sweet disposition and would often play with his two "friends", Ms Maras' dogs Bruce the beagle and Dante the cavalier king charles spaniel.
"He was such a sweetheart," she said.
According to Ms Maras, her neighbour indicated that Mr Kitty had been mauled to death by a dog.
After a story about a similar incident appeared on The Gympie Times website on March 30, Ms Maras contacted the office in an effort to raise awareness and prevent other people from losing their pets.
"I'd hate to have this happen again to anyone else, or any of my other pets," she said.
"I literally won't take my dogs on walks with the things I've seen with dog attacks in Gympie," she said.
In the meantime, his monstrous cat scratching gym sits in the corner of her front room and his feed bowl, perched on the back veranda rail, now holds a pot plant with his epitaph inscribed on the side, and his collar tucked in the top.
Ms Maras hasn't any immediate plans to get another fur-baby.
"I love my pets like my children. As much as I'd want to (get another cat), I probably won't. Perhaps in a couple of years," she said.
Pet responsibility: council regulations
GYMPIE Regional Council pet regulations fall under the Animal Management Act of 2008 and apply the same in rural or urban areas.
Dogs must be adequately contained, or else on a lead unless in a designated off-leash park, beach or exercise area.
When the council receive complaints of dog attacks on humans or other animals, Regulatory Services Officers will fully investigate the matter with the owner of the dog and the victim.
Depending on the severity of the incident, and after all of the facts have been established, action may be taken, ranging from informal advice to legal action.
A magistrate also has the power to issue a destruction order on the offending animal.
Many incidents are not reported to council as there is no legal obligation to report.
There is also nothing to stop a victim of dog attack from litigating the dog's owner whether or not the matter has been dealt with by the council or the courts.