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Game officials tackle deer-devouring dogs

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Game officials tackle deer-devouring dogs
Photo: Chris Barber
12:24 CEST+02:00
Authorities in the canton of Saint Gallen are planning to install surveillance cameras in the woods in a bid to capture stray dogs that are killing — and eating — deer and sheep.

Uncontrolled dogs are held responsible for killing a deer in the municipality of Zuzwil and three sheep in Herisau over the past few days, 20 Minuten reported on Monday.

Dogs devoured 10 deer In the town of Thurau in 2012, the newspaper said.

“In the city of St. Gallen, dogs tore apart three deer last year,” said Samuel Scheidegger, spokesman for city police.

Officials say this is just the tip of the iceberg.

In the town of Flawil, the wildlife department is planning to use video cameras to track the nuisance canines.

 “We are planing to install cameras to identify these dogs,” Max Stacher, Flawil’s game warden is quoted as saying by 20 Minuten.

The goal is to provide hunters and gamekeepers with video images of the culprits, he said.

“We are currently in the planning stage.”

Officials are also planning to make dog owners more accountable.

“Unfortunately, these dogs develop a habit of poaching and they continue to do so,” Rolf Domenig, president of an umbrella hunting group said.

Domenig is calling for a requirement that all dogs be put on a leash while in the forest.

The canton of St. Gallen currently allows dogs to run free in the woods, with leashes only necessary in public spaces in urban areas, such as schoolyards.

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