Lost pets pile in to shelters at new year

Holiday time is great for people, but not always their pets.

Macedon Ranges council impounded 10 dogs and a sheep following New Year’s Eve fireworks and festivities, while in neighbouring Hume, rangers took in 75 dogs and six cats between Christmas Eve and January 2.

Macedon Rangers community safety manager Anne-Louise Linder said six dogs had been reunited with their owners quite quickly.

“This was due to those owners ensuring their pet was microchipped, contact details were current and their pet was registered with council,” she said.

“It is important that pet owners regularly update their contact details with council and the microchip registry, and maintain their pet’s registration.”

Ms Linder also recommended placing an engraved ID tag with the pet’s name and a contact number on its collar.

She said the four dogs whose owners could not be located had been transferred to North Melbourne’s Lost Dogs Home. The sheep is still in the care of the council.

Hume council’s corporate services director Daryl Whitfort said by January 5, 58 pets had been reclaimed.

He said the rest had been placed in a shelter for eight days and, if they’re not reunited with the owners in that time, are assessed for rehousing, sale or adoption.

Mr Whitfort said dogs are particularly sensitive to new year’s eve fireworks, and a pet that normally appears quite placid can become frightened and jump a fence.

“Owners should always do everything they can to ensure both cats and dogs are safe and secure,” he said.