A call to John O'Donoghue, Acting Chief Executive of Meath County Council, Ireland and Prime Minister Bertie Ahern, asking that they ensure the provision of a dog pound for County Meath and stop slaughtering Meath dogs unnecessarily.

Meath County Council has no dog pound of it's own. Instead they use the pound in Dundalk, in neighbouring County Louth. Stray and surrendered dogs from Meath are held in unacceptable conditions at a sanctuary, from where they are transported to Dundalk Dog Pound each Tuesday.

Stray and surrendered dogs from County Louth are advertised on the Louth Council website, those from Meath very rarely are. Having been shipped into Dunalk on a Tuesday Meath dogs are kept out of sight of the public in the stables at the back of the pound and are killed on either that or the following day. Dundalk is as far as 50 or more miles from the area where Meath dogs are collected and is unaccessible to those without transport and/or on a low income - many people are unaware of where their lost dog will end up.

I have statements to prove that there have been times when 4 and 5 month old puppies from Meath have been killed by Dundalk pound, having been kept out of public sight and that 24 or more Meath dogs, the vast majority young and healthy, have been killed in a week. That's ALL the dogs who came from Meath that week.

Mr O'Donoghue says that Meath "fully complies with the requirements of the 1986 Control of Dogs Act, as amended and this includes implementing a caring and humane policy towards stray or abandoned dogs."

He adds that "" Research has shown that dogs are surrendered either because they are dangerous, bitten people, or it could be on foot of a court order."

Surely they are not all dangerous or subject to a court order?

A witness to events at the pound is quoted as saying that the wardens of Dundalk pound are adamant that Meath dogs are not their responsibility as they do not get paid to care for them - this is why Meath dogs are killed so readily without any attempts to re-home or reunite them with their owners.

I believe that thus Meath County Council is acting in breach of the 1986 Control of Dogs Act.

I have on many occasions found UK rescue places for dogs in Dundalk pound. I have NEVER been unable to find a reputable rescue for any dog I have had the chance to save, but there have been so many who have died because the management of the pound have not allowed them out to safety. This particularly applies to dogs from County Meath.

I call on Meath County Council to provide a dog pound of it's own, within it's own county. I ask that they advertise lost and unwanted dogs widely, through a variety of media, and that they cooperate with national and international rescues to find homes for those dogs who are unwanted or unclaimed. I also call upon Meath Council to immediately ensure that they provide a central, direct telephone number for Dundalk pound and ensure that county residents made aware of the fact that this is where Meath dogs currently are taken to.

I also ask that they immediately stop the current practice of Meath dogs being held out of public sight and instead allow Irish residents and local and international rescues to see and be made aware of these dogs so ensuring that they do not die.

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Jamie McdowellBy:
Petition target:
Meath County Council, John O'Donoghue, Bertie Ahern


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