The dumping of two hunting dogs on a Westmeath bog has been condemned as a “new low” by a local resident who discovered the howling creatures.
According to a report in the Westmeath Topic, the dogs – said to resemble foxhounds – remained on the bog for five days, watching passing cars and apparently waiting for their owner to return. One of them was seen lying next to a pink teddy bear.
The report reveals that the bogland in Coole on which they were found has previously been a dumping ground for “many kittens and cats”.
These dogs are urgently seeking a new home. If you can help, please get in touch now with the Westmeath Dog Pound, Zone C, Mullingar Business Park. Opening hours are 10-12, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Tel: 044 93 439 34. https://www.facebook.com/MullingarDogShelter/
Left loose and hungry for five days
Dogs abandoned in local bog?
Westmeath Topic Newspaper, 2nd June 2016
Why would anyone choose to abandon two fine-looking foxhounds in the middle of bog land, and leave them to fend for themselves, with one of the unfortunate animals, a female, lying with a pink teddy bear as they looked at every car that went by, as if waiting for their owner to return?
It happened in the past week, in bog land in Coole area, and local people have described the incident as a “new low” that two fine animals, which looked like hunting hounds, should have been treated so badly, and such an irresponsible attitude shown.
A local lady resident who first saw the dogs, told Westmeath Topic that while many kittens and cats have been dumped in the same area over the last number of years, she was surprised to hear two dogs barking loudly on her way home on Saturday night week.
“We heard a dog howling at 10 o’clock at night and we went up the road to find these two beautiful hounds abandoned.” She said the dogs, thought to be hunting dogs, remained in the same spot for the five days that they were loose and seemed to be watching out for their owner to return. “The female was lying with a pink teddy bear and they stayed in that spot looking at every car that went by.”
After what she described as a “psychologically exhausting week’, the dogs were finally caught by the Westmeath Dog Warden.
“I want to commend the warden, Tom Casserly, for his tireless efforts. He spent from 10 o’clock until 4pm trying to catch the two dogs with traps before he finally captured them. The unfortunate dogs were completely wild at this stage. They were frightened, hungry and out of their territory and would run the minute they saw you. It’s ridiculous that there isn’t funding for a second warden and that he has to cover all of Westmeath!” she said.
One local farmer, Pat Corrigan, who keeps sheep near where the dogs were abandoned, had to bring his sheep in each evening and let them out at 6.30am for fear the dogs would frighten the sheep. The resident, who asked not be named, said Mr. Corrigan suffered a dog attack several years back so he didn’t want to take any chances. “It’s not even that they would attack them but the sheep would be so terrified to see a big dog like that they would run and that’s what happened before when dogs came. They ran the sheep into drains, and barbed wire and they were drowned. That happened maybe ten years ago and it was very traumatic for him.”
Topic was also told that the new microchipping law (microchipping of Dogs Regulations 2015), which states that from 31 March, 2016, all dogs must have a microchip implanted, be registered on a database and have a valid certificate as evidence) would aggravate the problem further.
“People will now get rid of dogs before someone starts looking for microchips on animals. There were puppies dumped in Finea last week. It’s heartbreaking when you hear these stories. Spot checks need to be able to be done to see if dogs are microchipped. This is going to be a problem for every isolated place around the country.”
Mary Chundee of Friends of Animals, Mullingar, a registered charity dedicated to the welfare of a variety of animals in Cullion, said that cases of abandoned dogs are on the rise and they are feeling the effect.
“You can’t rehome a dog without microchipping. The last seven we got in were not microchipped and that costs us €20 per dog and it’s a lot extra on top of veterinary bills and you can’t escape from that. We just have to carry on. We have seven beautiful puppies here. We’re struggling but we have to keep going because there’s nobody else. You can’t refuse someone who comes at 9 o’clock with a distressed dog. We just take them. There’s no point in arguing, because it’ll be the dog that suffers if we don’t.“