In the past month, Murrindindi Shire Council Community Safety officers have responded to two separate instances of domestic animals caught in illegal steel-jaw traps.
Mayor Sandice McAulay said these incidents involved two beloved pets – a cat and a dog.
“Sadly the cat’s injuries were so extensive it had to be euthanized as a result of being caught in the illegal steel-jaw trap. And the small dog, who may have been trapped for more than three days, required extensive veterinary care, which placed the owner under considerable financial stress and mental duress,” Cr McAulay said.
“Our Community Safety officers have seized a number of illegal traps from private property and are undertaking an investigation on the use of steel-jaw traps around Murrindindi Shire.
“We urge those with steel-jaw traps to de-commission them and discard them appropriately so they do not end up in the wrong hands.
“It is important that the community know those found using illegal steel-jaw traps face fines of up to $40,000 or two year’s imprisonment.
In cases where body corporates are responsible, fines increase to more than $190,000. The severity of these penalties reflects the level of pain and suffering inflicted on animals that get caught in steel-jaw traps.
“These traps are banned because they are exceptionally cruel. Council takes animal welfare extremely seriously and won’t hesitate to take action,” Cr McAulay said.
If you are unsure of which trap types are illegal, please visit www.murrindindi.vic.gov.au/animaltrapping or contact Council’s Community Safety Unit on 5772 0333. Please also get in touch with the Council if you have any information about steel jaw traps being used in your neighbourhood.