Local authorities have said they will be cracking down on pet owners with unlicensed dogs in the territory; adding that unlicensed or stray dogs run the risk of being put to death.
A government media release issued this week said the Department of Agriculture and the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force will be working conjunctively to “resume implementation of the Dangerous Dogs Act”.
Under this Act, persons with unlicensed dogs will be prosecuted.
The Act also holds landlords responsible for animals that loiter on their premises or are owned or fed by tenants.
According to the said media release, dog owners must ensure their animals are always leashed or tied in yards. The release further said dogs being walked must also be on a leash and must wear their licence tag ‘at all times’.
According to the agriculture department, ‘repeat stray dogs’ will be captured and humanely killed.
The government department said: “The public is notified that any animal seen on a roadway without a collar and licence tag attached will be deemed as stray or ownerless and removed. If the animal is scanned and found having a microchip, it will be returned to the owner for one time only. Repeat strays will be euthanised.”
Dog licences can be obtained at the Department of Agriculture for a $10 fee.
In the meantime, tenants or landlords who capture and tie strays are told to contact the relevant authorities to remove the animals.
Government has listed these authorities and their contact information as follows: Phillip Deveaux – 468-9247, Vernon Richards – 468-9549, Dr Latisha Martin – 468-9693, or Dr Nadya George – 468-9548.
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