Zeus Fights 'bad Dog Tag' Supreme Court Brisbane
ZEUS FIGHTS 'BAD DOG TAG'
CHALLENGE IN COURT TO PIT BULL LAWS.
BY JEREMY PIERCE.
A womens who dog was classed as a pit bull will be the first to take the Gold Coast Council's
controversial dangerous dog laws to the SUPREME COURT.
Julie Morris says she has a pet store reciept proving her seven year-old dog, Zeus is an american Staffordshire terrier, but the council's contentious 22 point breed check list disagrees.
According to the council Zeus is a pit bull and faces the death penalty or, at the very least,
expulsion form the Gold Coast. Pit bulls are one of the four dogs banned here.
Mrs. Morris has spent almost three years fighting the council over Zeus fate and vows not to give up until she has exhausted every avenue.
"I have spent about $10,000 fighting this but i will keep going, l want be bullied around," she said.
"Zeus is a beautiful dog and we've never had a single complaint about him, not even for barking"
She said the drama began when she recieved a phone call from the council asking to perform
the identification test.
"I didn't think we had anything to worry about, but then the did the checks and said he was a pit bull and had to be removed from the city or destroyed," she said.
She said exemptions should be made for people who had their dog before legislation came in.
"We have been told we need breeding papers but when we bought Zeus seven years ago we didn't no we needed breeding papers,"said Mrs Morris.
Until now Zeus has remained at the family's Southport home, but his days there could be numbered.
"The matter goes to the Supreme Court in Brisbane on Tuesday. The 22 point identification process has been widely criticised as being to open to interpretation and several dogs owners have disputed council ruling's, but none have ever gone as far as the Supreme Court.
The sytem is used by most councils in SEQ.
Last month Gold Coast Bulletin reported on Bella's case, a dog banished form Logan after being
identified as a pit bull. despite the insistence of her former owners that she was staffy cross.
The decision to ban the dog as a "dangerous breed" was queried after Bella appeared in dog safety seminars in Kalgoorlie, her new home.
Earlier this year, the logan City Council spent $1000,000 on another court case involving a dog with a mistaken identity.
The 22 point check ruled the animal was a pit bull. It took DNA to prove other wise.
On the Gold Coast, the 22 point system has also been successfully challenged.
In 2004, Justin Taylor, a quadriplegic, went to court to win back his "best mate" after Fonzie-
which Mr Taylor claimed was actually a Staffordshire Terrier- was picked up by animal control officers and identified as a pit bull, using the questionaire style criteria test.
Lawyers for Mr Taylor successfully argued the officers were not experts in identifying breeds of dogs and that the identification process wwas too open to interpretation.
A Gold Coast City Council spokeman confirmed the council would be battling Mrs Morris in the Supreme Court but declined to comment further.
What a glorious pic, absolutely gorgeous.