asked the Minister for Justice whether, in view of the public service done by the Cats' and Dogs' Home he will (1) increase the annual grant to the Dogs' Home which is heavily in debt, and (2) make some financial provision for the Cats' Home so that their valuable work can be continued.
Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Grant to Cats' and Dogs' Home.
The making of a grant by my Department to the Dogs' Home has been possible only because it relieves the Garda Síochána of a duty which they would otherwise have, under the provisions of the Dogs' Act, 1906, of looking after stray dogs for a period of seven days. The Garda Síochána have no corresponding legal duty in regard to stray cats and there is no basis on which I, as Minister for Justice, could make a grant available to the Cats' Home. I have reason to believe that the Society concerned appreciate this position and that their request for a grant for the Cats' Home is being made to the Dublin Corporation.
As regards the Dogs' Home, a grant of £800 a year is paid. A few years ago, an application was made for an increase in that grant. To enable that application to be considered, the Society was asked by my Department to supply certain information as to the financial position of the Home, as they had done in earlier years, but the information has not since been received nor has any further application been made.
If the Society desire to renew their application and if they supply the particulars sought, I am prepared to consider the matter as sympathetically as possible.