Further details around the rehoming of a husky dog which was involved in the killing of a family pet cat in Portlaoise last summer, were sought by Judge Catherine Staines at Thursday’s sitting of Portlaoise District Court.
Husky dogs come to the district court’s attention, more than other dog breeds, Judge Staines also noted.
The judge made her comments in the course of considering a victim impact report in a case where two husky dogs had mauled a family pet cat to death.
Before the court on the matter was James Greene of 71 O’Moore Place, Portlaoise. He was charged with having an uncontrolled dog, a dog unaccompanied and not having effectual control of a dog at Rossvale Court, Mountmellick Road, Portlaoise on July 31, 2020.
Sgt JJ Kirby noted that the family's pet cat had been mauled to death by the dogs and the family had been very upset by it.
Judge Staines noted that two Husky dogs had been involved in the killing of the cat. The incident had turned the family’s lives upside down. The pet cat was the apple of the eye of the wife of the injured party.
The family had suffered as a result.
They did not accept the apology offered by Mr Greene. They said it was not a once off incident. The dogs had been wandering around for weeks.
The Judge noted that the injured party wanted the dogs rehomed, not destroyed.
However, she said she had concerns. A dog like this was capable of harming a child.
She said she wanted to be 100 percent sure the new owners were responsible and keeping the dog properly secured.
She noted a recent incident in an another part of the country where a young child had been killed by a dog.
Husky dogs come to the court's attention more than any other dogs, she stated.
Defence Solicitor Barry Fitzgerald said that they were well founded concerns.
Judge Staines said she wanted clarification. She noted that the injured party had drawn attention to Husky Rescue Ireland and Andy Cullen. She said she wanted to hear from Mr Cullen about the situation these dogs were being kept in.
She said she wanted to hear this before the matter would be finalised.
She addressed the issue of some financial compensation to the injured party's wife for the dreadful trauma she had undergone.
Mr Fitzgerald noted that there were two dogs involved, but that Mr Greene was not the owner of the other dog. Any compensation should be split between both owners.
Judge Staines said she would take into account that he was only responsible for one dog.
She asked Mr Greene how he had got the dog rehomed. He replied that he had organised it himself.
She said she needed to know who the new owners were and how the dog was secured.
She directed that €400 be paid to the injured party and she asked for details of the situation of the new owners.
The matter was adjourned to September 23.
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