Bruce the bull mastiff.
Bruce the bull mastiff. Contributed

Council takes dog owner to court over backyard attack

OWNERS of Bruce the bull mastiff have been handed a further setback with Ipswich City Council prosecuting them over an attack that happened in their own backyard.

The Denmark Hill owners Kev and Chris Thomas faced the council in court on Friday to appeal the destruction order on their dog. The Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) case has been adjourned for a fortnight.

Now they will front Ipswich Magistrates Court on Monday to face charges under the Animal Management Act for offences which attract maximum penalties totalling more than $14,000.

A council spokesman said under the Act the owner must ensure a dog does not attack and cause fear (attracting a maximum penalty of $5692) and the owner of a dangerous dog must ensure each permit condition imposed is complied with for the dog (maximum penalty $8538).

The dog has been impounded since council officers seized it in August after it bit a meter reader who walked past four warning signs and two gates to access the electricity meter in the backyard.

Energex has previously confirmed to The QT that the property was logged as housing a dangerous dog and the meter reader had not given the owners advance warning of the visit.

The Thomas family has set up a Facebook page, Save Bruce, which has attracted more than 6200 followers supporting their case to have their pet returned.

They were granted a stay on the destruction order, originally set for October 16, pending the QCAT hearing.

Bruce was originally declared dangerous by the council in 2010 after he bit a council animal management officer on the hand while he was inspecting fencing at the property.

The officer was acting on a complaint of a roaming dog after Bruce escaped.

As reported earlier in The QT owners said Bruce had not escaped from the property since and have two series of fences and eight signs displayed warning of a dangerous dog on the property.


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