Forget the fact that World War was imminent. In August 1939 only one subject preoccupied the good people of Perth: stray dogs.

It all kicked off with a short letter from a Subiaco truckie who signed himself ‘Anti-Pest’:

Is there no authority to control dogs on roads? As a truck driver I am continuously harassed by the pests which infest suburban streets, and I never miss an opportunity of running over and destroying a stray. What about other drivers joining me in a clean-up?

You can image the howls of outrage from the canine fans. And boy, did they howl.

Anti-Pest was described as a ‘cruel devil’ and a ‘dirty brute’. A Mt Lawley correspondent threatened to simply put him in Karrakatta. While a Perth writer was more specific, offering to attach the truckie’s neck to a tree with a stout rope.

Another dog lover was a little more forgiving, simply promising to “playfully” run over Anti-Pest with his own truck a few times.

Although one truckie meekly tried to offer some support to his colleague, the message came through loud and clear: don’t mess with the crazy dog ladies.