A council appointed Animal Management Officer (AMO) may seize and detain a dog if it is wandering at large, has attacked another person or animal, is unduly dangerous or if the AMO believes it is necessary to ensure public safety.
The seized dog may either be returned to the owner or held at the local council’s dog pound. The council will try to reunite the dog with its owner as soon as possible, as long as public safety is not compromised.
It is crucial that your dog is registered and microchipped so that it is easily traceable if it becomes lost.
If you lose your dog contact your local Council, animal shelters and local vets as soon as possible. The Animal Welfare League of South Australia has a section for lost and found pets on their website.
Lost dogs can be easily reunited with their owners when implanted with a microchip. From 1 July 2018 all dogs and cats will be required to be mircochipped. A microchip is about the size of a grain of rice and it does not cause pain or discomfort to the dog. Once the dog is microchipped, it will be permanently identified and the details will be recorded for the life of the dog in an accredited national database.
If your dog is kept in the pound, a public notice must be displayed at the council office or, in areas where there is no council office, the police station for at least 72 hours. If it is possible to identify you as the owner, you must be informed.
If your dog is seized to stop it attacking or because it is dangerous, the council must advise you of its intention to issue an order in relation to the dog. If no intention to make an order is given within seven days, your dog must be returned to you.
If your dog is found wandering, it will only be returned if you provide satisfactory evidence of ownership or control of the dog, and you pay any costs of seizure and detention.