Mother feared losing her beloved dog
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A DISTRAUGHT single mother has spoken out about her week from hell when she feared losing her beloved pet dog - because she could not afford to pay the council to get him back.
Victoria James' pet dog Max (pictured) ran out of the two-bedroom house she shares with her 14-year-old son and eight-year-old daughter in Littlebrook Close, Burnham, on Sunday.
After hours of searching, the devastated part-time carer called Slough Borough Council's (SBC) neighbourhood enforcement team for help. On Monday the council called to say Max had been found and was in kennels, but he would be rehomed if she did not pay a £158 fee within seven days.
Her uncle stepped in at the last minute on Thursday to pay the charge.
However, the mother-of-two, who was left angry with the way she was treated, said: "I don't want to borrow money from anyone and I'm not happy about it but what can I do? They have my hands tied. I'm very angry with the council."
The council charges a £107 out-of-hours collection charge, a £25 statutory fine for allowing a pet to stray and a £13 per night kennel fee that they waived for Tuesday and Wednesday night.
Ms James, who rescued the black labrador cross two years ago after his previous owners moved abroad, said: "It was horrible without him.
"My daughter didn't understand what was going on and why we couldn't see him. He must have been terrified without us."
Ian Blake, neighbourhood enforcement officer for SBC, said the council tries to reunite lost dogs with their owners, but costs include vet bills, overnight stays, call out fees and a fine, which is charged at the legal minimum.
He added: "In this case, we did try and reason with the owner, even asking what she could contribute towards the cost. Unfortunately, she said in no uncertain terms that she would not pay anything for the dog."
He said Ms James' dog was not microchipped or wearing a collar, adding: "People need to realise there is a huge responsibility in owning a dog."
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Jul 6, 17:07
Yes it is a huge responsibility owning a dog, i have one myself, however, £107 out of hours fee, when is it "in" hours and where's the proof the Council found it out of hours? £25 for allowing the dog to stray? the front door was open the dog got out!
Seems another way ripping more money from the locals.
I have an Airedale, I take every precaution not to let my dog stray, however, if i was in the garden and he saw a cat, instincts kick in and he'd be gone, over the fence, through the gate, anyway he could get out, but is that straying?
The real shock for me is the £13 a night kennel fees, if it's that cheap i'm losing my dog when i go to Italy in 3 weeks time :-)
Recommend? Yes 6 No 5