Gympie council has been given permission to destroy two dangerous dogs, Maggie and Max, following a prolonged civil battle with their owner.
Gympie council has been given permission to destroy two dangerous dogs, Maggie and Max, following a prolonged civil battle with their owner.

Gympie owner of 2 pit bulls loses fight to save their lives

Gympie Regional Council has won the right to put down two dangerous dogs following a four year legal battle with their owner.

The council and Kate Mitchell have been fighting over the fate of a male black American Staffordshire Pit Bull Terrier named Max and a female brown and white American Staffordshire Pit Bull Terrier called Maggie since 2017.

The dogs were declared dangerous by the council in February 2017, after repeatedly escaping from Ms Mitchell's Tamaree property in 2016 and attacking a neighbour's dog.

Five months after being declared dangerous, Max and Maggie were impounded by the council following the death of another neighbour's dog, a five-month old kelpie cross pup named Boof.

The two dogs were found by Boof's owner near the pup's corpse and a member of the council's animal control team who seized them.

QCAT member Vass Poteri found the two dogs, Maggie and Max, were responsible for the death of five-month old puppy Boof in 2017.
QCAT member Vass Poteri found the two dogs, Maggie and Max, were responsible for the death of five-month old puppy Boof in 2017.

The destruction of Maggie and Max was ordered shortly after, prompting a prolonged civil battle with Ms Mitchell.

Ms Mitchell argued it was wild dogs, not her two pit bulls, that killed the kelpie cross pup.

This was rejected in a Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal hearing by QCAT member Vass Poteri who found, as no wild dogs were in the vicinity of Boof's owner's Tamaree property on the day of its death, "Maggie and Max were responsible for the death of Boof".

In his published order Mr Poteri said the "essential question" in considering a review of the order was "whether the dogs can be controlled taking into consideration the threat, or likely threat, of the dogs attacking or causing fear to other dogs or people".

The council’s decision to order the dogs’ destruction in August 2017 sparked a prolonged legal battle over their fate.
The council’s decision to order the dogs’ destruction in August 2017 sparked a prolonged legal battle over their fate.

Mr Poteri "did not find Ms Mitchell a convincing witness" and her evidence was not corroborated.

"While I accept that there is no evidence that the dogs are aggressive or a danger to people, it is extremely concerning that Ms Mitchell still does not accept that her dogs are responsible for the very serious attacks on Joe and the death of Boof," he said.

Ms Mitchell's dogs were impounded for the duration of the court case, incurring more than $17,000 in fees for their care.

Gympie Times


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