There are no excuses, just take care of your pets
I'VE been a dog lover all my life, and that's why I was so annoyed to discover a staffy roaming my street upon returning from a late-night gym session a few weeks ago.
I wasn't too worried about being attacked.
The pooch in question didn't seem overly menacing - but he barked and chased my car when I attempted to navigate around him.
MORE GYMPIE PET STORIES
What did grind my gears was the very real possibility that this dog could very well have met the next car bonnet he strayed across on his midnight stroll.
I understand some dogs are notorious escape artists, and I get that stormy weather or fireworks can sometimes trigger our furry friends' flight mode, but the buck must always stop with us pet owners.
There really is no excuse.
When we bring a pet into our lives, it is our job to keep them safe and secure for the duration of theirs.
Eight dogs have been put down in the Gympie region in the first half of this year - the same number from all of 2017.
A further 112 needed RSPCA assistance to find new forever homes, but it's good to hear 128 were reunited with their owners.
The same can't be said for cats - only 16 have returned home with 233 sheltered and 12 euthanised, and that's a lingering issue.
These might not all be record-breaking figures, but the message remains clear: This is not good enough.
If you know your pet is a flight risk, you need to find ways to make sure they don't get out.
If you can't be bothered, it might be worth considering whether you're right for the responsibility.
These Gympie dogs are looking for a new home
THERE are two days left to adopt animals in long-term care from the RSPCA Gympie Animal Shelter.
Animals that have been in care between 50 and 480 days are available for adoption for the heavily discounted price of $49 until this Sunday.
Among them is Jake, a three-year-old Labrador retriever under RSPCA care for 174 days so far.
All animals come desexed, vaccinated, micro-chipped, fully wormed and vet-checked.
Visit www.rspcaqld.org.au/adopt or call the Gympie shelter on 5482 9407 for more information or to view animal profiles.