Feral dogs terrorise Rocky suburb
CHANTAL Booth woke Monday morning to find one of her calves had been mauled by what is assumed to be a pack of feral dogs.
Due to the extreme wounds inflicted on the calf, Ms Booth was forced to euthanise the animal, losing potential profit and future earnings she estimates at more than $10,000.
It's not the first time her cattle have been attacked by feral dogs in the Alton Downs area outside Rockhampton.
"About a month ago now we mustered in a paddock and even adult cattle had bite marks on them and one little calf ... we were able to give to a course of antibiotics to heal her up but she still won't be able to be bred from because of where they bit her," Ms Booth said.
"There was 18 head out of that 60 that had bite marks of some sort, none of them as bad as this little one obviously."
Excess costs of veterinary care and medications have also affected Ms Booth, with the cost sometimes being too expensive and seeing her lose more money than she makes from the cattle.
"When we sell to the meatworks directly they will actually condemn sometimes as much as a side for old bite marks that have healed up," Ms Booth said.
She said defective cattle stock from these rampant dog attacks was not the only loss that Alton Downs locals were experiencing.
There have been attacks on locals' sheep, pet dogs, goats, and even cases of landowners being stalked on their own property by packs of the dogs.
Despite the use of baiting, provided by the council, Ms Booth said the "dogs have become too smart" and the baited meat was no longer effective.
"That didn't work the last time we tried it so we actually got in contact with a really good professional trapper and he came out and he did months of work. He got about 13 dogs in four trappings," she said.
Rockhampton Regional Council's Acting Community Services Manager Steve Gatt said council worked closely with State Government departments to ensure issues surrounding wild dogs were dealt with effectively.
"Our Pest Management officers work to control these - and other - invasive restricted animals, but any support and information we receive from residents makes a real difference," Mr Gatt said.
"This is especially true if we can get the information as quickly as possible after any sightings or incidents, so that we can investigate in a timely manner."
"On our website there is lots of advice for residents, both in terms of discouraging wild dogs from entering urban areas and what to do if you are approached," Mr Gatt said.
"The best way to contact us to report an incident is to call us on 4932 9000 or 1300 22 55 77, or email firstname.lastname@example.org."