Little authority for dog of a jobRichard Treadgold | June 3, 2012
Are you getting used to it?
First, random stopping of any innocent person on the public street, with no cause needing to be shown, to catch the occasional miscreant. You got used to that. Now it’s mere local body bureaucrats breaking into our formerly sacrosanct houses to enforce some obscure little bylaw about keeping pets. Ready to march down the Queen Street, are we? I wish. But by now we’re all too used to it!
Week after week we chase the couldn’t-care-less dog owners to renew their licence. They want the dog — we let them have it. Why can’t they pay up on time? Sure, we put the price up 300%. But we go to a lot of trouble and expense in administration. Like I say, we chase the little buggers all year long, and it’s always the same culprits.
So there I am, I can hear the dog in the house, and the owner’s obviously not home. I want that dog. There’s only one thing the owners understand, and that’s losing their precious bloody pet. I’m going in. I find a window ajar and unlock the front door. Don’t tell me I need a damned search warrant.
The NZ Herald today carries evidence that even Kiwis can turn to the dark side, and all quite justified, apparently. But who understands that this is only the beginning? That without extraordinary effort, things can never return to what they were. The first time a mere dog control officer breaks into a person’s home means that, while human memory lasts, it has happened before. The Herald:
A woman is [sic] says a dog control officer broke into her home to seize her dog because his registration was overdue.
Liesje Bradley alleges the officer broke into her Te Atatu home on Tuesday.
She had forgotten to register Monty, a 10-year-old Jack Russell-fox terrier cross, after her son suffered serious head injuries after a scooter accident.
Under the Dog Control Act 1996, dog control officers can seize an unregistered dog, and may enter a property to do so, but they may not enter the owner’s “dwelling house”.
When contacted yesterday, an Auckland Council spokesman said he would only be able to access information about this case next week.
I’m singularly unimpressed by the bureaucrat who claims to know nothing about the “case”.
Every bullying bureaucrat has a little authority, and everyone with a little authority will at times stretch it as far as it will go. I hope the police see this event for what it is, a bullying petty Hitler with more social agenda on his mind than social equity. Or is it more simply justified by a kind of practical expediency — this was the easiest way of getting the job done?
So are tyrants justified the world over. This one needs a sharp reminder of exactly who employs him. It’s the people whose homes he invades. He needs a pointed reminder of the rights they have in our civilised society.
Monty was home alone on Tuesday and was shut inside the house. A neighbour noticed the officer and four or five others at the house and phoned Bradley straight away.
The officer asked the neighbour whether they were “good people”, and then agreed to leave without Monty.
Bradley left work to come home immediately and found the front door unlocked and the bedroom window ajar. She found a notice on a dresser stating the officer’s name and mobile number.
What an invasion. What an odious betrayal. A private person entering a stranger’s home like that would be arrested. Yet what will happen to this disgraceful council officer?
She said there was no evidence of a search warrant having been issued, nor any complaints against Monty.
In short order, I want to see evidence of an arrest warrant being executed on this abominable little man, or of his police questioning.
What a violation of our public trust. In New Zealand, land of the free Kiwi, home of the brave wave.