Amber Dawes is determined to change the law.
A month after dogs she described as pit bulls allegedly slaughtered five of her sheep, Dawes learned Wednesday the owner of the dogs faces no fines and the dogs will not be destroyed.
“They (the dogs) won’t stop,” Dawes told The NEWS. “If they get out again they will go after anything that runs. If you (read) through the bylaw, they get like three chances to kill stuff.”
Regional District of Nanaimo director of bylaw services Tom Armet said Wednesday the RDN, through its animal control contractor, has deemed the dogs in question dangerous. All that means, Armet confirmed, is the dogs must be muzzled and on a leash when off the owner’s property and they must be in a secure enclosure when on the property.
Armet said troubles identifying exactly which dogs did the damage on Dawes’ property has proven elusive.
“We haven’t been able to conclusively bring that matter before the courts,” said Armet. “We can’t identify exactly which ones (did the killing).”
This provided little solace to Dawes.
“So, pretty much if I don’t have a picture of a dog on top of my sheep, than forget it,” said Dawes. “It’s a disappointing outcome, pretty sad. They (the dog owners) haven’t even been fined.”
Dawes, who said she continues to fear for the safety of children and livestock in the area because of the dogs who allegedly killed her sheep, said she is part of a committee with RDN director Julian Fell that will suggest changes to both the RDN bylaw and the provincial Livestock Act.
“It’s too late for me, but who is to say they won’t get out again?” said Dawes.