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Stray dogs overrun Montego Bay

Published:Wednesday | July 27, 2011 | 12:00 AM

Barrington Flemming, Gleaner Writer


Mayor of Montego Bay, Charles Sinclair, is moving to rid the streets of the western city of the growing number of stray dogs which are posing a danger to residents.

According to Sinclair, the dogs are barking and biting at people, and recently one was even seen lying in the fountain at the historic Sam Sharpe Square.

"Having dogs roaming the downtown area is something that is unacceptable. I saw a dog resting in the fountain, which was a very strange sight," Sinclair stated.

"That is something that you don't see in any city, developing or developed, so I had to think about the approach that I would have to take to deal with it because it is not a part of the pound regulations."

He indicated that safety has to be preserved, so no effort would be spared to get the dogs outside the Second City.

Health risk

"The dogs are not trained in any particular way to use sanitary conveniences, so they are going to do their thing any place and at any time, so we cannot allow this to continue, as this poses a health risk."

The dogs are said to be in packs along Church Street, St James Street, Orange Street, Lawrence Lane, Sam Sharpe Square, Strand Street and North Lane.

During the regular monthly meeting of the St James Parish Council, secretary/manager Winston Palmer was instructed to contact the Jamaica Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (JSPCA) office at Brandon Hill, Montego Bay, to have them assist in dealing with the strays.

Sinclair indicated that while he was aware that the operator of the pound has equipment which may be used to capture the dogs, he would like to have JSPCA's input as to an approved way of dealing with the dogs.

"While the St James Parish Council has the responsibility to ensure that the city is safe and the citizens are kept safe, we will discuss it with the JSPCA, as they would be able to provide services with people who can do adoption of the dogs and if treatment is needed then they can do that as well."