The Saint Lucia Animal Protection Society (SLAPS) has called on the authorities to include the organization in any plans to address a problem of stray dogs that is affecting vendors near the George F.L Charles airport.
Vendors interviewed by the Times have reported that stray dogs in the area have become a nuisance to them and visitors to the Vigie beach area opposite the airport.
One vendor told the Times that the animals sometimes attack people.
Another vendor, James Surage, who sells coconuts in the area, recalled seeing the dogs running and barking after persons on motorcycles.
“I find that they should keep them away from the beach, I mean if someone comes and ties their dog by the beach there is nothing wrong with that,” Surage stated.
SLAPS President, Pamela Devaux, said the dogs cannot be blamed for hanging around because tourists feed them.
“They buy chicken and rotis and give them to the dogs,” the SLAPS official said.
She said SLAPS had contacted the vendors to discuss the problem and was told that about a dozen dogs are involved.
“We understand the problem – we understand that dogs can be a nuisance occasionally and are occasionally dangerous, but if anything is going to be done it has to be done in a humane way,” Devaux said, adding that Veterinarians should also be consulted.
Contacted for comment, an official of the National Conservation Authority (NCA) said the body was aware of the stray dog problem and intends to address it after discussing the matter with all concerned, including affected vendors and SLAPS.