Wild dog sightings in Tin Can Bay
Gympie Regional Council is asking residents in the Tin Can Bay and Cooloola Cove areas to be on alert after it received reports of wild dogs frequenting the area.
Division 1 Councillor, Jess Milne, said that while wild dogs are ever-present and naturally occurring in the area, council will start to more actively monitor this situation because of the reported interactions of wild dogs with people and domestic pets.
One report received by council claimed that a person and their pet dog were bailed up and growled at by a wild dog while they were walking through a forest area; fortunately, the pet dog was secure on a lead.
“Wild dogs naturally pass through the area; they only hang around and interact with people if there is reason for them to do so,” said Cr Milne.
“Usually the reasons are access to food, or access to domestic pets.”
Cr Milne said that it was important that residents understand that feeding wild dogs is illegal and will contribute to their dependant and risky behaviour.
“Feeding wild dogs is an offence and may incur a hefty fine,” said Cr Milne.
“These animals are naturally skinny and do not need human assistance for survival.”
Cr Milne said that this recent pack of wild dogs seem to have been hanging around for about a month now and do not seem to be moving on.
“This is concerning because it represents habituated behaviour that we need to watch closely to manage risk to our community,” she said.
Council will be monitoring the current situation carefully and working with state department land managers to consider control measures if the situation escalates or worsens.
Cr Milne is also encouraging the community to never approach a wild dog as their behaviour can change quickly to be aggressive and territorial.
“Residents don’t need to be alarmed, but they do need to be cautious if they come into contact with these animals,” said Cr Milne.
“The expert advice is to stay calm, try to scare them away, and don’t turn your back.
“It is also vital that domestic dogs be on leash when out walking and are kept safe behind well-maintained fencing when at home, because dogs attract dogs and your pet may be at risk of attack,” she said.