Woman vows to fight council's seizure of her dog
A TOOWOOMBA woman will continue her fight to have her beloved dog Crowley returned to her.
Te-Arna Gesler says the Toowoomba Regional Council has incorrectly seized her dog, operating on a tip off from a person with a grudge and judging Crowley based on his appearance.
A DNA test has proven Crowley is not what council says he is - a pit bull - but rather a soft and gentle American staffordshire terrier cross.
"He's been around other kids and other dogs and cats and has never done anything wrong," Ms Gesler said.
"He's a very friendly dog."
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Ms Gesler said the situation started more than nine weeks ago when a friend of her former partner contacted council and reported Crowley as a pit bull, a breed which is widely restricted in Queensland.
"I put in an appeal and that wasn't enough so I did a second," Ms Gesler said.
"I had a DNA test done to prove it and I took the results in to council on Friday.
"That test proved he's got American staffordshire, bull terrier and standard schnauzer."
Amstaffs were placed on the restricted list under the Animal Management Act 2008 after a landmark Supreme Court ruling in April 2010 which found the breed was closely related to the pit bull.
But the former Bligh Government overruled the court's decision in September 2010 with then-Minister for Local Government Desley Boyle lauding the amendment a "relief to people who own amstaffs".
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Toowoomba Regional Council environment and community general manager Nick Hauser confirmed council received a complaint about Crowley and the decision to remove him had been made by an animal management officer "on the grounds the dog may be a restricted breed".
He said amstaffs were not banned or restricted in Toowoomba, but speculation remained around Crowley's breed.
"Investigations are ongoing and council has been in contact with the dog's owner surrounding the information and process required before any decision on the dog's future is made," Mr Hauser said.
"American staffordshire terriers are not banned or restricted in the Toowoomba Region; however, the exact breed of the dog is yet to be confirmed despite the owner's representations.
"Council is guided by State Government legislation and Local laws and subordinate local laws that govern the way council manages dog breeds, animal attacks and registration
"A genetic test is not always conclusive and needs corroboration from an attending veterinarian.
"The onus is on the owner to prove their dog is not a restricted breed and council will continue to put safety at the forefront of all decisions when it comes to complaints from the public about any animal."
Ms Gesler said she would this week deliver a letter from a vet confirming Crowley's breed.