HORROR: Gracie the Boston terrier was one on of a number of dogs found during raids by RSPCA on four Churchable properties in September. Picture: RSPCA Queensland
HORROR: Gracie the Boston terrier was one on of a number of dogs found during raids by RSPCA on four Churchable properties in September. Picture: RSPCA Queensland

Backyard breeders stopped in tracks after puppy raid horror

AN ALLEGED puppy farm operation has been shut down by council following extensive animal welfare raids across the Lockyer Valley.

After four properties on Wotan Rd at Churchable were raided in September, the Lockyer Valley Regional Council took action, planning to issue fines and cancelling a kennel licence for one property.

They also declined the renewal of another kennel.

While the council had resolved to issue penalty infringement notices, Deputy Mayor Jason Cook confirmed fines had not been issued yet.

"The kennels are subject to an ongoing RSPCA investigation and council is working to address licensing issues," Cr Cook said.

"Council is following due process and appropriate fines will be issued in accordance with the local law."

More than 200 dogs and puppies were found on the properties, and 78 of them were seized by the RSPCA.

It's believed many of the animals were suffering from untreated medical conditions.

Documents tabled at the LVRC council meeting last week detailed a history of noncompliance at two of the properties, with warning notices having been issued on multiple occasions to reduce the numbers of dogs being kept on the properties.

In total, 146 unregistered dogs were found during the raids, and all four properties were identified as keeping excessive numbers of dogs in breach of council regulations or the conditions of kennel permits.

The report also revealed council officers conducted a kennel licence renewal inspection of one of the properties in October, after the raids had occurred.

It found some improvements to the standards of the keeping of dogs compared to September, but officers also found one dog required urgent veterinary care due to what appeared to be a "prolapsed uterus or similar".

The report noted "the owner of the dog was not aware of this matter until it was identified

by the council officers".

The emotion-charged topic led the council to close the meeting to the general public and media in order to discuss actions against the property owners.

Mayor Tanya Milligan was particularly concerned about the issues at the kennels.

"I'm really personally struggling with supporting licences for people who have done the wrong thing," Cr Milligan said before the meeting went into closed session.

"Maybe we need to go into closed (session) to talk about particular properties to get a better understanding."

Councillor Chris Wilson also pointed out there were a number of kennels in Wotan Rd area which were operating perfectly legally.

Following the closed session, the council resolved to issue penalty infringement notices for "the keeping of unregistered dogs and/or the keeping of excess numbers of animals without approval".

One of the properties with a kennel licence has had the licence cancelled, while the other, which was subject to the renewal inspection, has had its licence renewal declined.

The council will also undertake an inspection program of the area to identify properties where excess animals and or unregistered dogs are being kept.