Fri | Dec 14, 2018

What cars, guns and dogs have in common

Published:Wednesday | September 5, 2018 | 12:00 AM


The articles by Christopher Serju ('Collar dog owners') and Orville Taylor ('Tragic three Cs: child, canines, crocodiles') in The Sunday Gleaner of September 2, 2018, were both informative and insightful but left me wanting for detailed solutions.

What automobiles, guns and dogs have in common is that all are potentially dangerous. Legal ownership of cars and guns is required.

Why not dogs?

I've never been able to understand why Jamaica has never required dogs, cats, and other potentially dangerous pets to be registered to an owner so someone can be held liable if their pet harms a human being.

Yearly registration fees could be used to train and equip dog catchers to capture stray dogs. If an unregistered dog is captured, it could be held at a kennel for a week for an owner to come forward and pay a fine to have it returned. If the one-week period passes with no owner coming forward, the animal could be humanely put down.

Similar systems exist in other countries.

I've never owned a pet, so I don't know how they work, but the current administration likely has the greatest financial acumen of any in Jamaica's history. They should be capable of coming up with an effective system that works on an at least partial cost-recovery basis.