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Huge variations in payment of dog fines by local authorities

Figures from 2012 show payment rates varied from full compliance to just 3.6 per cent.

THE ENFORCEMENT OF on-the-spot fines issued for contravening the Control of Dogs Acts varies significantly from county to county, figures from the Department of Environment have revealed.

Just under 46 per cent of all fines were paid in 2012, with only three out of 34 local authorities who issued fines showing a payment rate of 100 per cent.

The most impressive of these was Fingal – operated by Ashton Dog Pound – which had all 328 of its on-the-spot fines paid.

Clare, which is operated by the ISPCA, and Sligo, which is operated by a private contractor, also had a 100 per cent payment rate.

South Dublin, which is operated by the local authority, had a payment rate of 3.6 per cent, with just 34 of the 935 on-the-spot fines being paid.

Finances

Dog warden operations within the 34 local authorities ran at a combined loss of €1,582,563.66 for 2012.

Out of the 34, only eight had a surplus, the greatest of which was Kerry. With an income of €309,554.35 and expenditure of €220,385.62, it had a surplus of €89,168.73.

The three greatest individual losses were all in Leinster. South Dublin ran a loss of just over €219,000, Dublin City nearly €195,000 and Kildare just over €141,000.

Put to sleep

516 dogs (including lurchers) were put to sleep in Wexford last year. Close behind was Clare, which saw 479 animals put to sleep. Donegal had the third largest number of dogs put to sleep at 394.

Read: 88 convictions for dog control offences in 2012 >

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Paul Hyland

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