As part of Australia’s brutal mandatory COVID-19 shutdowns, officials in the state of New South Wales shot and killed 15 rescue shelter dogs, including 10 puppies, so volunteers would not have a reason to leave their homes.
“Lorraine Knezevic, a volunteer with Rural Outback Animal Respite/Rescue, said she arranged with the council to pick up the 15 dogs, including 10 puppies,” the Daily Mail reports.
But local officials, citing COVID-19 lockdowns, shot and killed the dogs and puppies to prevent Knezevic and other volunteers from leaving their homes.
“Bourke Shire Council, in the state’s north-west, killed the dogs to prevent volunteers at a Cobar-based animal shelter from travelling to pick up the animals last week, according to council’s watchdog, the Office of Local Government,” the Sydney Morning Herald reports.
“OLG has been informed that the council decided to take this course of action to protect its employees and community, including vulnerable Aboriginal populations, from the risk of COVID-19 transmission,” an OLG spokesperson claims.
Animal shelters and pounds were told they could continue operating, and shelter volunteers were observing all measures to avoid transmission of COVID-19, but government officials still ordered volunteers locked in their homes and the dogs killed.
“We are deeply distressed and completely appalled by this callous dog shooting and we totally reject council’s unacceptable justifications that this killing was apparently undertaken as part of a COVID- safe plan,” Lisa Ryan, of Animal Liberation, tells the SMH.
Local officials say they will investigate to determine whether local officials violated the law.
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