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   Domestic Animal Services Dogs ... Deserve Daily Walks                                                                November 2010
   Domestic Animal Services Dogs ... Deserve Daily Walks                                                                November 2010

        New Coordinator for DAS Volunteers
                                                                                      I have the privilege to have been appointed as the new
                                                                                      DAS Volunteer Coordinator. The new role will work in
                                                                                      well with existing duties in animal welfare policy advice
                                                                                      and administration of the Animal Welfare Act 1992.
                                                                                      Over the last couple of weeks I have been working
                                                                                      behind the scenes examining a number of issues and
                                                                                      talking with many of you about problems experienced
                                                                                      volunteering with DAS. I would like to take this
                                                                                      opportunity to wholeheartedly thank Di Johnstone
                                                                                      for all her efforts in keeping the volunteer program
                                                                                      operating at DAS. I know I can rely on Di to continue her
                                                                                      good work in assisting both dogs and humans involved
                                                                                      with DAS.
                                                                                      Some of you may remember me from the years I spent
                                                                                      with RSPCA as their Executive Officer and will know I
                                                                                      am no stranger to the world of dogs or to volunteering.
                                                                                      While the environment at DAS is more regulatory in
                                                                                      nature many of the issues remain the same. In particular,
                                                                                      dogs that are locked up in enclosures with no exercise
                                                                                      and little stimulation run the risk of suffering mental
                                                                                      anxiety and, at its worst, this can result in dogs going
  ‘kennel crazy’, often resulting in both mental and physical damage. Volunteers with DAS are there to prevent this from happening and
  DAS has probably the best re-homing rate of any government operated pound in Australia. With the help of staff, volunteers and rescue
  organisations such as ARF, just over 96% of dogs received by DAS were returned to their homes or found new homes, last year. A truly
  amazing result that you can all be proud of !
  My role is to coordinate volunteer services and to be available to discuss issues as they may arise. I am not based at DAS but will be on
  site early Monday mornings, Wednesday mornings and as required at other times.
  I can be contacted by phone on 6207 2249 mornings only, or by email – any time.
  Current volunteers should have received a letter inviting them to a meeting held on 8 November, and an email concerning the new
  roster. If you are currently volunteering at DAS (or would like to join us in the future!) and have not received any communication, please
  send me a quick email so you can be included in the future.
  In the accompanying picture you can see my two lovely dogs, Ellie (Elk Hound X) and Bonnie (anyone’s guess really). Unfortunately, I
  failed to get all my animals in the one photo. I managed to get both dogs, both cats and most of my chooks on or next to me – even
  though they all get on extremely well, this lasted for about a second before chooks flapped and made a mess of me, startling the cats
  and disturbing the dogs – well at least I tried….
  I look forward to meeting you all on the trail or at this year’s Christmas party (details soon).
                                                                                                                                    — Simon Tadd

Letter from the Editor                          In this issue we feature ARF’s temperament
                                                testing of DAS dogs. ARF assessments are
                                                                                                  We remind dog owners of their
                                                                                                  responsibilities during holiday periods and
In very welcome news, our new Volunteer         important for the public who adopt dogs           advise of a great book about taking your dog
Coordinator, Simon Tadd has started and         direct from DAS and for volunteers.               with you!
has already met with some volunteers. You       Volunteers and rescue groups are keen to          And there are the regular items with an
can read about Simon and his plans for the      ensure that the Canberra community knows          important message from DAS about the
volunteer program.                              there are many lovely dogs at DAS that need       ongoing problem of Parvo.
                                                to be re-homed to caring homes. We feature
We were also encouraged that senior TAMS        a calendar with photos of some of the dogs
officers met with volunteers on 8 November
and expressed strong support for the
                                                rescued by ARF from DAS. Dogs at DAS
                                                available for re-homing are, as volunteers
                                                                                                  Di Johnstone
volunteer program.                              know, beautiful friendly dogs.                    DAS Volunteer and Editor
                                                                             DAS dogs star in
                                                                              ARF calendar

                   Leo and Sally

                                                             As volunteers know there are lots of lovely dogs at DAS that need
With the holiday season approaching, responsible             new homes. Some are adopted directly by the public from DAS;
dog owners will be worrying about arrangements               others are re-homed through rescue groups. One of the thousands
for the care of their dogs while they are away.              of dogs that ARF has re-homed is Bobby, ARF’s 2011 calendar cover
But leaving dogs in good care is only one solution.          boy.  ARF’s 2011 calendar features photos of beautiful rescued dogs
Another is to take our beloved pooches with us. This         of all shapes and sizes. Do buy the calendar and help support ARF
wonderful book is a guide to how you can do this.            and its important work. It’s available via ARF’s website
There was a time when taking a dog with you on
holiday was practically impossible. But now there
are an extraordinary number and range of places                     Volunteer Supplies
across Australia that allow, and in some cases
actively encourage, you to take your pets.           The following volunteer supplies have been purchased from the
                                                     $500 provided to DAS volunteers by the Chief Minister. There are 9
Now in a newly published 11th edition (for
                                                     new collars, 16 good quality woven leads (with thanks to the RSPCA
2011/12), this enormously popular guide takes
                                                     for providing these at cost), 20 new Doglovers printed heavy duty
you to the places in Australia, over 2000 of these,
                                                     T-shirts and several bags of liver pieces as training aids.
where you can take your dog, whether it is beaches,
                                                     In addition Paul Mlakar of Mlakar Signs has very generously donated
forests, farms, holiday cottages, caravan parks or
                                                     over 200 beautiful new magnetized ‘day’ signs for the kennels.
                                                     DAS will keep the first aid kit up to date—this is an OHS issue—and
There is a bit of planning involved, and you always  provide antiseptic wash for volunteers.
need to check about the requirements of the
accommodation before you set off. ‘Holidaying with
Dogs’ also gives you helpful advice on how to travel                      Ask the Registrar
safely and responsibly with pets.
                                                     Where can DAS volunteers find the new leads and collars?  
If you really can’t take your dog, there are also    The leads and collars are in a bag in the drawer at the front counter of
names of many potential pet sitters.                 DAS reception. 
No dog owner should be without this book. Ask for          Can volunteers give dogs treats? 
it at your favourite book store or check out               No, treats—especially bones can block the waste disposal system in                              the kennels and cause hygiene problems.
(Editor’s note: I have taken a dog on holiday to Pub       What will be the arrangements for volunteers over the Christmas/
Hill Farm, Narooma and to Mogendoura Farm, near            New Year period? 
Moruya, both featured in this book. They were both         These arrangements will be made by the Volunteer Coordinator
great places for dogs. Pub Hill Farm gets a ‘five paw’     Simon Tadd.

                                              The major Canberra-based dog rescue organisations working cooperatively with DAS are:
                                                         RSPCA ACT                    Canberra Pooch Rescue
                                                         ACT Rescue and Foster Inc. CARA
                                                         A number of breed-specific organisations also rescue dogs from DAS.
                                                  Feature Article
                                 Temperament Testing
                   By Beverley Margosis: ARF/DAS Liaison Officer, ARF Temperament Tester and ARF Foster Carer

Every Saturday a dedicated team of ARF (ACT Rescue and Foster Inc) testers turns up at DAS to test the next group of dogs
that have made the dreaded euthanasia list. In all weathers the team will test each dog in exactly the same way. This test is
designed not to ‘fail’ the dogs but to give the rescuers the best information we can gather regarding the dog’s temperament.
Obviously we are completely aware that DAS is not the most perfect testing environment but we do what we can. Generally
each test takes about 10 minutes to perform and it will give us information which we then use when we write up a paper
profile sheet for the dog’s cage; we also put the temperament test results up onto our own rescue forum and then on to
Dogzonline in the hope that the lovely needies receive rescue or a forever home directly from the pound.
The test enables us to see many different but important sides of the hound in need. For example we test for food aggression.
We perform this test by firstly putting a bowl of dry food down to see if the dog engages and begins to eat. If it does we
                                                                                approach with a hand on a stick and put the
                                                                                hand in the bowl. Then we run it over the dog’s
                                                                                head and along the body. We finish by trying
                                                                                to push the dog’s head out of the bowl. This is
                                                                                not done forcefully but it is done firmly. In an
                                                                                ideal world the dog would move away from the
                                                                                bowl completely. The most common response
                                                                                we see is that they just continue to eat and
                                                                                seem unfazed by the hand being there. In more
                                                                                unusual circumstances we have had a dog snap
                                                                                quite aggressively at the hand. Again this does
                                                                                not mean that the dog has not passed that part
                                                                                of the test but what it does do is arm a foster
                                                                                carer with more information about behaviours
                                                                                that will need to be modified prior to the dog’s
                                                                                rehoming back into the community. We also test
                                                                                for dog to dog introductions. This is done as I
                                                                                believe it is probably the most important part
                                                                                of the test. Most rescuers have their own dogs
                                                                                and potential forever homes would desire a
                                                                                social dog that they did not have to worry about
                                                                                bad behaviour in public or at home. Another
                                                                                important factor is our trainability section. We
                                                                                assess how responsive the dog is to toys, food
                                                                                and pats; we check to see if there is any basic
                                                                                training present. By checking for trainability we
                                                                                are able to learn what motivates the dog and
                                                                                also how receptive it is so we can iron out any
                                                                                issues with training. These and other tests will be
                                                                                explained further in future newsletters.
                                                                                  Every Saturday when we have received our list
                                                                                  we place an ARF magnet on the dogs’ cages so
                                                                                  that DAS Volunteer Walkers know that we need
                                                                                  to test the dog. This is because we need to test
                                                                                  the dogs before they have a walk.
                                                                                  Every ARF tester has dog experience. We use
                                                                                  a format for our testing that was devised
                                                                                  by Underdog Training and we do extensive
Beverley Margosis with Tai who has been rehomed to a beautiful home through ARF   weekend workshops with them on a regular
                                                                                  basis so that we are up to date and informed.
Most temperament testers are also foster carers who all own dogs and have done for quite some time. We all use our
experience to help us bond with and test each dog that we have out.
ARF’s main objective in performing these tests is to ensure that our carers and other rescue groups in Canberra are rehoming
dogs that are safe to be housed back out into the community. Our ARF testing notices on the cage for each tested dog help
the public to know a little bit about each dog’s personality and needs. This helps them make the right decision when having a
new canine companion join their family.
For further information about ARF visit:
                                                                             An important me
                                                                                             ss            age from DAS
                                                                             From 2 Novembe
                                                                                                 r 2010, DAS has be
                                                                             staffed with its au                        en fully
                                                                                                  thorised strength
                                                                             and negotiations                          of Rangers,
                                                                                                 are underway with

                                                                             proactive joint op                           the AFP for
                                                                                                 erations in the ne
                                                                             Despite recent qu                        ar future. 
                                                                                                 arantine periods du
                                                                            DAS operations in                             e to parvovirus,

                                                                                                  the field have cont
                                                                            normal.  Between                             inued as
                                                                                                 19 June 2010 and
                                                                            a total of 596 dogs                        31 October 2010
                                                                                                  were impounded

                                                                           From 13 Septembe                             at the facility. 
                                                                                                  r 2010 all dogs en
                                                                           facility are being C3                       tering the
                                                                                                   vaccinated agains
                                                                                                                         t parvovirus.

                                                                           Vets advise that th
                                                                                                e parvovirus is pa
                                                                          virulent at the mom                        rticularly
                                                                                                  ent and is difficult

                                                                          from the commun                               to remove
                                                                                               ity if vaccination le
                                                                         fall below 70%.  Va                          vels of dogs
                                                                                                ccination is the be
                                                                         to protect dogs ag                          st insurance
                                                                                               ainst the virus.  Pu
                                                                         extremely suscep                            ppies are
                                                                                             tible to the virus an
                                                                        full course of vacc                          d need the
                                                                                              inations at 6, 12 an
                                                                        to ensure adequa                            d 16 weeks
                                                                                             te protection.  If th
                                                                        action is not follow                       is course of
                                                                                               ed, vaccination of
                                                                        be unsuccessful, du                         puppies can
                                                                                               e to antibodies in
                                                                       milk.  A single vacc                         their mother’s
                                                                                              ination at 6 weeks
                                                                       neutralised by the                           can be fully
                                        for the DAS                                          antibodies, and if
               For public access hours                                 of vaccinations is
                                                                                            not followed, a pu
                                                                                                                  the full course
               office and shelter over Ch                              unprotected.                              ppy can be
                                        t the DAS
               and New Year, check ou
                                                  It is important for
               website on www.tams.a                                                      a dog’s protection
                                           al_services                vaccination regim                           that its
                live/pets/domestic_anim                                                   e is kept current.   

                                      At holiday times, far too many dogs
                                      found straying.  If you plan to go aw
                                      during the holidays, you should   ensure
                                      you make reliable arrangements for
                                      your dog with a responsible carer.

                                                                                                                       To become a volunteer
                                                                                                                          Telephone 6207 2249
                  Domestic Animal Services (DAS) works to ensure the welfare of domestic                                 For more information
                  animals in the Territory. The DAS facilities at Mugga Lane, Symonston cater                              Telephone: 13 22 81
                  for dogs found roaming, straying or lost in the ACT.                                                       Fax: (02) 6207 2252
detach here

         Comments—please tear off and leave at DAS reception with any views, suggestions, or questions for the editor.

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