A howler of a decision

A DOGGIE daycare in the old West Perth scout hall will head to the State Administrative Tribunal after being rejected by City of Perth commissioners last week.

Council planners had recommended the pooch palace be approved, but after howls of protest from 14 objectors and a deputation from the strata company of a nearby office block, commissioners Andrew Hammond and Gaye McMath weren’t convinced applicant Marian Gorman could keep her clients’ yapping to acceptable levels.

Ms Gorman had already finished some of the fit outs for Madame Ma’s Doggie Daycare, and was looking at installing sound-dampening panels, double-glazed windows,  rubberised floors and a non-doggie buffer room.

• Marian Gorman with a happy pooch. Photo by KRD Photography

Smells

She had a plan for barky dogs to get one-on-one time with staff to settle them down, with a final measure of sending relentlessly yappy dogs home if they just couldn’t hush. Ms Gorman, a mining engineer who looks after foster dogs when she’s not on site, says Madame Ma’s isn’t a kennel: “It’s a very high-class establishment targeting pampered pooches,” she said.

Giovanni Monaco chairs the strata company for a neighbouring office block and says apart from potential smells, noises and an eye-watering pink building, suits in the business district didn’t want to be confronted by dogs.

“It is hard to imagine a professional organisation wanting to look out of their window in the morning, during the day, and then in the afternoon when they are meeting with business leaders, only to then see dogs going in and out of that building, a building that is going to be painted a pink colour,” Mr Monaco said.

”It will make it professionally untenable.”

He said it was already difficult to rent out office space and in a worst case scenario the dogs could lead to lower property prices and some businesses being forced into liquidation.

During the item, commissioners took the rare step of suspending standing orders to let the mum of a potential pooch minder speak.

“There’s three people waiting for jobs – three people that don’t have jobs right now that are going to be employed by this business,” Joanne Huggins said.

“One of those people is my daughter – and she hasn’t been employed full time for over two years.

“This is quite emotive for me, because I can see something very good being thrown out because of one person’s opinion about pink and noise.”

by DAVID BELL

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