18 Nov 10 @ 12:30pm by Judith Maizey
Pals forever . . . Shane in his kitchen with Firestar and Paddington Bear.
LOGANHOLME: Owning 100 guinea pigs 94 more than Logan City’s proposed new animal keeping laws may allow Shane Walters is facing the prospect of having to cull his much-loved animals.
Under new laws, Logan City Council proposes only six guinea pigs be kept at any one property.
But Mr Walters, of Loganholme, who is president of the Bayside Cavy Club, said he hoped council would make an exception for registered breeders like himself.
He said he had spoken to council’s animals and city standards committee chair Cr Graham Able and made a submission to council.
Mr Walters said all of his animals, many of them champions, were well housed and cared for.
“I’ve got long hairs, whites, crested, all different breeds they’re pedigree breeds and pure bloods and you need more than six (for breeding),’’ he said.
He said most of his guinea pigs had their own cage.
“They’re the Porsche 911 of guinea pig cages. They’re in my house, sometimes even in my bedroom,’’ he said.
With more than 200 show trophies to their credit, Mr Walters said his guinea pigs were his life. “I love them to pieces without them I couldn’t survive.’‘
Logan City Council Animals & City Standards Committee chair Councillor Graham Able said he hoped the new laws would be in place by March next year without too much heartache.
Cr Able said the latest draft on the new laws would probably go out for public consultation early next year after further workshops with council staff.
“It’s my idea that we can have a law that has two separate components one for urban and one for rural,’’ he said.
A record number of 3000 submissions was received by council to the first draft of the proposed new rules.
Thousands of people also signed petitions opposing any new restrictions for the keeping of animals, ranging from cockatoos and guinea pigs to horses and alpacas.
Cr Able said he was also opposed to the introduction of any new fees and charges.
“We’ve digested all those 3000 submissions and putthem into categories,’’ he said.
“The majority of people said they did not want any change, they did not want any fees or charges and we’ve listened to them.’‘
Cr Phil Pidgeon said he did not want to make “a rash decision’’ on the new laws, but hoped they would be in place by June, 2011.
“There has always been an intent to have multiple consultations with our residents, despite some ill-informed claims previously that we had adopted the proposals as law,’’ he said. “Such claims were pure scaremongering and political mischief making.’‘
IT takes a few hours to get him ready before he goes on stage, and when he’s not getting pampered, he lies in air-conditioned comfort.
And if that’s not enough, after he’s sat in front of admirers and won awards, his special reward is to be surrounded by beautiful females.
His name is Banshee. Full name: Pigs Can Fly Banshee. And he is a guinea pig.
He’s not even 18 months old, but already the Loganholme guinea pig is a national champion, coming home with a swag of awards from the National Cavy Show held in New South Wales late last month.
And his owner Shane Walters is hoping this is only the first step before he becomes a grand champion.
“He’s got the looks, and he’s a good show boy and stud,” Mr Walters said.
“I’ve got him working and showing and he can handle it.”
All up Mr Walters walked away from the national competition with 21 ribbons, four trophies and four best of breeds.
A huge achievement for the chef who got his first guinea pig ‘Nosy’ when was six years old.
Mr Walters now has about 100 guinea pigs and is the president of the Bayside Cavy Club.
“I just love them, they are just beautiful,” he said about the furry critters.