THE death of two huskies at the hands of the council has left a family distraught.
Calliope residents Mary and Neal Grimshaw admit they did surrender their huskies, Angel and Demon, to council officers who arrived at their home, but Mary says she never imagined her "beautiful dogs" would die.
She says the dogs had escaped from the yard on several occasions and apparently killed some chickens. She says the two council officers had demanded she pay thousands in fines or give the dogs up.
"They gave me an ultimatum - give up the dogs up or I would be prosecuted if they got out again. I felt like I had no choice but to hand them over."
Less than 24 hours later the dogs were euthanased.
Gladstone Regional Council couldn't comment on this particular case due to privacy laws, but in a written statement CEO Stuart Randle said that dogs were only put to sleep if a destruction order was issued and no review requested, or, if after a review the destruction order stands.
"If an animal is signed over to the council for any reason relating to aggressive tendencies, it is highly unlikely that the animals would be recommended for re-homing."
But Ms Grimshaw was so distressed she said she couldn't stand to live in Gladstone anymore, instead headed for Melbourne in Victoria today.
"I can't face looking in the backyard," Ms Grimshaw said.
"They were beautiful dogs and didn't need to die. I feel like the council didn't do anything to help us."
Breeder Ian Levett was just as distressed.
He would have done anything to save the dogs he bred, but because he was not the registered owner he was not notified the council planned to put the dogs down.
He said now the council won't accept his complaint over the way they handled the situation.
"I have never begged anyone for anything in my life," Mr Levett said.
"But I begged the council pound, please don't put them down.
"I am heart broken. I can't believe they are gone."
State MP Glenn Butcher said council could "perhaps... review this case in detail and see if any procedural changes could or should be made".
Generally, animals are held for a minimum of three working days if they are not registered and/or microchipped, or five working days if they are registered and/or microchipped.
However, as Stuart Randle said, if an owner signed the animal over to the council, then the timeframes did not apply. If the animal has been surrendered and it was not to be re-homed, the animal would be put to sleep as soon as possible.
We understand there was some thought the huskies were considered dangerous.