[CULTURE AND ENTERTAINMENT★★ – JOHNNY DEPP’S DOGS FACE DEATH IN AUSTRALIA]
(P1) Actor Johnny Depp has been told he has until Saturday to remove his dogs from Australia or they will be PUT DOWN.
(P2) Depp and his wife Amber Heard are accused of not declaring Yorkshire Terriers Boo and Pistol to customs officials when they flew into Queensland by private jet last month.
(P3) Australia has strict animal QUARANTINE laws to prevent importing infections.
(P4) Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce said he understood the dogs were being sent back to the US.
(P5) “I personally as a minister don’t have Mr Depp’s phone number, nor does he have mine,” Mr Joyce told the BBC.
(P6) “But my department is informed they are arranging for the dogs to be sent back to the United States. I’d say that is the wisest move.”
(P7) There has been no immediate comment from Depp or Heard.
(P8) An online PETITION to save the “cute dogs” has received nearly 5,000 signatures in Australia.
(P9) “Have a heart Barnaby! Don’t kill these cute puppies,” it appealed.
(P10) Mr Joyce said in an earlier interview: “If we start letting movie stars break the law, then why don’t we just break the laws for everybody? It’s time that Pistol and Boo went back to the United States.”
(P11) The dogs’ illegal entry appears to have been discovered after a dog grooming salon posted pictures of them on its Facebook page.
(P12) Officials visited the house that Depp and Heard are renting on Wednesday.
(P13) “The dogs have been ordered into quarantine and the owners have been advised the dogs must be exported within 72 hours,” said a statement on the agricultural ministry website.
(P14) TV networks have sent helicopters in the hope of catching a glimpse of the Pirates of the Caribbean star and his dogs.
(P15) Media interest in the story is intense.
(P16) Depp is in Australia shooting the fifth film in the Pirates of the Caribbean series, Dead Men Tell No Tales.
(P17) News of the threat to the star’s dogs quickly spread across social media, with hundreds of Australians taking to Facebook and Twitter to express their views.
(P18) “Seriously? Not just quarantined, but being put down? I get that Depp broke a law by not telling someone about his dogs but the response is death to the dogs? That’s the largest OVERREACTION ever,” said Facebook user Alexis Rogers.
(P19) “They don’t have to kill the dogs. They could just quarantine them,” said Bree Graham MacTaggart.
(P20) Others, however, did not express much sympathy for Depp.
(P21) “We have strict quarantine laws for a reason,” said Anne Salathiel. “He should not have brought his dogs. He can afford to do it the right way.”
(P22) Can you take your dog to Australia?
- Yes, but only if it came from an approved country, is not pregnant, and is not a banned breed or domestic/non-domestic HYBRID
- The dog must first be fully vaccinated and microchipped before it can get an import permit
- Within 45 days of travel it has to test clear for diseases
- Five days before travel it must be health-checked by a government-approved vet in the export country
- On arrival it must go into government quarantine for a minimum of 10 days on arrival, longer if it is seen as coming from a riskier country or it shows signs of ill-health
- Private jets are subject to the same regulations as any other vessel or aircraft
If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.
- Briefly summarize the content of the article in your own words.
- Why does Australia have strict laws about bringing dogs into the country?
- Social media plays several roles in this story. What are those roles?
- What would you do now if you were Johnny Depp?
- Should stars have to follow the same rules as the rest of us?
EXPRESSIONS TO PRACTICE:
What do the following expressions mean? Practice using each expression in a sentence; extra points if you can use it in conversation.
- Put down