Animal cruelty on the rise
A NORTH Coast animal rights advocate believes there is a dark undercurrent of animal cruelty on the North Coast.
Northern Rivers-based convenor of Australians for Animals, Sue Arnold has called on the State Government and Minister for local government Don Page to appoint more RSPCA inspectors to the area urgently.
Her call comes after the animal rights group decided to post a $1000 reward for the arrest and conviction of the person who bashed a three-month-old pup that was later found under a pile of garbage at Woodenbong tip last week.
"Animal cruelty is often a real indicator of child cruelty," she said.
"The person who did this is still out there; who knows what they will do next."
Ms Arnold said that with only one inspector covering the region from Tweed Heads to Coffs Harbour police should start using their powers to address cases of animal cruelty.
"Under NSW law police have the same authority as the RSPCA in animal cruelty cases but they pass the buck onto the RSPCA when they should act themselves," she said.
"Minister Page and the police area commander should instruct police to respond to cruelty calls, especially as they are aware there is only one RSPCA inspector in the region.
"Mr Page had a meeting with Animal Rights and Rescue from Lismore regarding this on December 2, so he is aware of the problem."
Ms Arnold said there were many reasons for animal cruelty, including the number of drug addicts living on the North Coast who also kept animals.
She also believes people should have to pass a competency test before they are allowed to own an animal
Any information regarding the injured pup given to Australians for Animals on 6680 3674 will be treated confidentially and only passed on to the RSPCA and police.
The RSPCA can also be called directly on 9770 7555 or 1300 278 3589.