Quality submision

Defining needs
As Local Authorities define their needs for the service they require, we developed our solutions within our Animal Management Incident system (known to us as AIMS).

We offer a basic contracted service, with value added options that end users partly finance, keeping the cost to local authorities down to a minimum.

Simply contracting for the basics and utilising a pay as you go service for all other activities, such as search and capture, is becoming increasingly common.

Up until 2008 the majority of Local Authorities directly employed staff to undertake the role of a dog warden, providing a full service way beyond mandatory requirements, often employing two wardens to cover for down time caused by holidays and sickness.

After 2008 as finances became tighter it was recognised by many Local Authorities that they could not afford to go that far beyond their mandatory responsibility and that way of operating was far too expensive.

You will need to establish politically what, the service should be providing:

 Is just providing a reception point is satisfactory?

Is providing a minimum service of stray dog collection acceptable without providing a search and capture service?

If purchasing other activities, on a job by job basis is satisfactory, or if other services need to be included in the base service?

What levels of promotional services does the service require and are there other officers who can undertake this?

Is the loss of a marked vehicle and high profile patrols acceptable?

Local Authorities are now providing a variety of differing services, some mixing and matching local needs:

  1. Stray dog drop off point(s). This is the minimum requirement under the mandatory responsibilities. Some Authorities are lucky enough to have rescue centres within their district who operate as a reception point. The disadvantage is that finders of dogs are unlikely to put dogs in their vehicles to take them to a reception point, so it increases the problems of stray dogs.
  2. Collection of contained strays. Effectively a collection services for people finding dogs. Dogs are only collected if the finder is in a position to take the dog to a collection point (i.e. contained)
  3. Search and capture. A service to search for strays that are not contained.
  4. Dangerous dog investigations. Increasingly this is a role undertaken by the police with the appointment of dog control services, however this service is utilised to make the initial investigation and filter genuinely dangerous occurrences through to the police.
  5. Investigation of other request for service, i.e. barking, dog fouling etc.
  6. Promotional activities, talks, displays and microchipping
  7. Patrolling, providing a high visibility deterrent.

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