New Zealand Dog News

Reviewing the dog news in New Zealand with editors comments. Someone needs to keep reviewing how our dogs are doing in society.

August 31, 2006

Cautious approval for another tool in police armoury

Given the choice, people experienced in these matters would opt to be brought down by a Taser rather than a police dog, says The Daily News. Really now?? Is that because police dogs are uncontrollable?

A 40kg German Shepherd swinging on the back of an offender's arm or leg is terrifying and very painful. But why does a dog have to swing off an arm??

It will leave injuries that can take months to repair, with life-long scars.

A dart from a Thomas A. Swift Electric Rifle will paralyse a human for 10 or 20 seconds, and hurt like hell.

But after that, the recipient will be back to normal, or at least back to whatever state they were in when the police felt the need to briefly incapacitate them.

The Taser has no lasting side-effects – other than handcuffs and, perhaps, jail. Why don't you say the real reason... because they are cheaper. Stop comparing dogs to laser guns!

However, not everyone is convinced of either the New Zealand Police's need for another front-line weapon, or the negligible risk to those targeted.

There is a group called Campaign Against the Taser, led by Auckland lawyer Marie Dyhrberg and backed by the Greens, the Maori Party and civil rights groups.

They argue that the police already have batons and pepper spray, in addition to dogs, when officers' powers of negotiation are being ignored and the risk of injuries, or death, continues to rise.

The critics fear that Taser guns, after an artificially careful 12 months of trial, will become the negotiator of first choice. In an era of rising violence, especially in crimes fuelled by drugs – and, in particular, methamphetamine – it is almost certain that some of their worst fears will come true. HUM... now this is an interesting area. Why don't the Green Party and Maori Party start asking some hard questions about drug use.

Ever since that weed- marijane- cannabis has been demonised (ie cannabis is bad for you) and police started arresting people for smoking a leaf (dumb and dumber.. why don't they arrest people for eating excess fat as that's worse for you). The more they arrested, the more people started using other drugs that are undetected in the blood. That's why P or crystal meths entered society. There was a need created by the media, police, lawyers, politicians... Hey you... if you don't agree, why don't you comment on it.. there's a place for you to do it on this blog!

So, why don't the Green and Maori Party (and labour and national) start the process of taking the profit out of drugs, then there wouldn't be a need for drug dogs or laser guns, or lawyers, or rehab worker (well, not that many), prisons, etc etc...

After all, many a good idea has been undone by human nature.

And police officers are not infallible, especially at 3am, in the middle of a dangerous and fast-moving incident. Critics cite American statistics taken between the introductory 1999 and 2005, which show more than 100 Taser-tagged people have died. And how many have died from police dogs? read the bits in between

It is true that a decent society, a perfect society, would have no place for Tasers.

But the real world is not like that. But it could be !! Shoot for the stars!

It is the meth-heads that decent society has no place for, and if the police say they need another tool at their disposal, used by trained and limited squads, then the trial should get the public's blessing, however cautiously. Who wrote this crap?

August 30, 2006

Pitbull dog attack victims call for muzzle safeguard

The victims of a pitbull dog attack are demanding a change in the law to have all potentially dangerous breeds muzzled in public. Oh boy... here we go !! We should also neuter all potential rapist too! (I wish they could).

Meg Donovan was walking her nine-month-old Cavalier King Charles puppy, Chucky, at Fitzroy's Peringa Park yesterday afternoon when she was attacked by an unleashed pitbull dog.
The horrifying experience left Mrs Donovan needing hospital treatment to cuts and bite marks on her arm, while her puppy was last night under a vet's care with serious injuries.

"The dog just went at me and tore Chucky from my hands," she said. "It tore right through my leather coat and I couldn't hold on to Chucky any longer. I had big heavy gumboots on and I kept kicking it in the guts, but it just wouldn't stop. I've never seen anything like it in my life."

You know... I totally sympathyse with this story. I think that it's awful that this has happened. It's revolting...

But now let's look at the solution that they have asked for... all POTENTIALLY dangerous dogs be muzzled in public. Excuse me? All dogs, for that matter, are potentially dangerous. It's the socialisation.

It's actually the ALLOWING for socialisation to even take place.

Now we have to go to PUPPY SCHOOL.

Sheese... I remember when a dog was allowed to sniff another dog and let them have their fun. Now it's like kids: we tell them when to exercise, we drive them to their friends, we organise their daily life... and then we wonder WHY they do drugs, write graffitti, and be a nuisance to society. Does this sound familiar.. helloo!!!

Muzzle a scottie

A dog owner is fighting council demands to have one of his two pedigree scottish terriers muzzled and microchipped. Go boy GO !! And I hope that you are to be heard in court !! We tried to, and we were forbidden to have our dog in court because of THEIR mistake... I will write it up ... it is worth a very big mention.

Tony Antonelli's two dogs are his constant companions but the Auckland City Council is taking action against one of them, Macadam, after an incident at Madill's Farm in Kohimarama.
Someone reported the dog to the council after the incident on February 20.

Macadam got out to the off-leash area behind Mr Antonelli's home and encountered the unnamed complainant and her dog. Why is this person UNnamed? We have the right to face the person who complains... I really object to this 'hide behind the curtain'. If she were so right, she'd show her face!!

"I understand rules, such as muzzling, are in place to protect children from animals and animals from each other. If my dog was a hulking vicious rottweiler then sure," he says.

"But to have to muzzle a scottie? That's just ridiculous. Yup,... gone mad I say! however, saying that... it's not the fact that it's a scottie, it's that a person can complain without any evidence (although by your acknowledgement, you are now guilty), it is the fact that there are no GREY lines in the law. We are CREATING unsolicialised dogs by the mere laws that forbid us from walking our dog and getting them to know the rules of human society.

"Scotties are renowned for their friendliness and will go home with anyone. "Two girls aged about six, who live up the road, regularly come and ask me if they can walk the dogs. Doesn't this fact count for anything in the courts of Auckland City Council !!!

"We only have this one version of the event, in which the woman who made the complaint says Macadam sniffed her dog, ran away, then came back and bit her dog on the mouth and front legs causing `superficial wounds' and chased two other dogs she had with her." Well, you know what they say.. never admit to anything! We've learned that the hard way...

Mr Antonelli had no objection to paying the $200 fine from that incident and had Macadam neutered within three days. Well, I DO

"I work from home and didn't realise he was gone for about half-an-hour. I then went looking for him," he says. "Now all these months later I receive notification from the council my dog has been classified as menacing, he must be microchipped and is not allowed in any public place unless muzzled." EXACTLY, why do city council ask US to respond within 30 days of when the infringement was written (NOT RECEIVED) when THEY can take all the time in the world !!!

If the dog is not muzzled Mr Antonelli risks a $3000 fine. That's absurd !! Where the hell do they get these arbitrary fines from ?? That's a good way to piss people off and having law abiding citizens going to the streets !

"That just put me over the edge. What did I just say? I've told the council that I will be microchipping and muzzling them," he says. "Macadam has only had this one minor problem. I paid the fine and voluntarily had him neutered within three days.

"My feeling is that you will never stop dogs taking an interest in each other in an off-the-leash environment. "This is an utter overreaction."

Mr Antonelli has lodged an objection to Macadam's classification and has insisted the council pay back the fine he paid. They should get that B to show herself... that righteous little B

He wants to fight Auckland city over the ruling and is inviting people who have been in similar situations to contact him, phone: 379-7077 or email:
I can't beleive that the newspaper has included his email address... wow !!

Auckland city spokeswoman Ashleigh Peek says there are two ways the council classifies dogs as menacing - by breed or by deed. BLAH BLAH BLAH

An incident of aggression includes when a dog bites another dog, animal or person.
"Scotty dogs are not classified as menacing by breed. The only dog classified as menacing by breed in Auckland city is the american pitbull terrier.

If a dog is classified as menacing, it must be muzzled in public, microchipped and neutered.

She says the council has no tolerance of dangerous or menacing dogs and will not hesitate to take action if an attack is brought to its attention.

"The overall aim is public safety from aggressive dogs that could pose a threat to any person, stock, poultry, domestic animal or protected wildlife," she says. So why aren't there more grey areas... and I actually oppose to this.. a cat can kill a bird and nothing happens to them, but a dog !!

"The owners of the dog can object to a decision and it will be reviewed by a council committee.
"If the committee agrees with the classification, the owner can then appeal to the high court."

Look at the money that could be saved !! because of a studid City Council!

Wolf nabs his prey after 5km chase

Police dog Wolf tracked suspects almost five kilometres over waterways and paddocks to catch two alleged burglars.

The chase started about noon on Monday, when a young woman returned to her family's rural home on the Masterton-Martinborough road, near Gladstone, to find a carload of young men leaving the property. The house had been ransacked and thousands of dollars worth of electronic equipment had gone, police said.

Dog handler Constable Lloyd McKay said the woman was able to give a clear description of the car and the men inside. The car was found in Masterton soon after – but with only one occupant and none of the stolen property. Patrols from all over Wairarapa hunted the other suspects. One patrol found a large amount of stolen goods stashed near Carterton. MORE

Dog may be put down after attack

The fate of a pitbull detained for attacking a woman and her puppy in a New Plymouth park on Tuesday still hangs in the balance. MORE

Trio took children, pet dog on crime spree

Three adults took four children and the family dog along on a crime spree in the Wellington region.

Christchurch District Court was told today that the spree took in 118 charges of unlawfully taking cars, or breaking into them and stealing property, and dishonestly using the credit cards they found. MORE

That's really funny about bringing the dog on a crime spree. You gotta wonder...

August 26, 2006

Woman feared for safety as dogs attacked cat, trial told

A Hamilton cat owner says she feared for her own safety when two pit bull terriers attacked her cat in July last year. Dog owner Toni Walker, also of Hamilton, is defending charges of owning a dog that attacked a domestic pet, failing to keep a dog under a control, and not having the menacing dog muzzled.
Raewyn Osborne told the court she was in the kitchen at her Croall Cr home in St Andrews, when she heard her cat screaming and dogs growling outside.
"I went to have a look on the driveway and there were two dogs. One had the hind leg and the other had the head area. They were ripping the cat like a tug of war. I feared for my safety but I knew I had to get the cat off the dogs," she said.
Hamilton City Council dog control officer Paul Thomson said he spotted one of the dogs on neighbouring Heath St and caught it with the help of a member of the public, who told him the other dog – was owned by Walker.
Walker's lawyer, Soraya Baker, said it was a case of mistaken identity. The trial continues today

Mistaken identify..what? two dogs!!

Man fined for dumping dog

Dumping his dog when a landlord told him animals were not allowed in his rented house has cost a Hamilton man $300.

Aaryn Clarke, 22, was ordered to pay the money to the SPCA after appearing in the Hamilton District Court yesterday and pleading guilty to a charge of failing to prevent the animal's suffering.
SPCA representative Tracy Robinson told the court a complaint was received from a person who saw Clarke abandon the dog –- a labrador cross –- in Lissette Rd, Newstead, and drive off. The person noted the registration number of Clarke's car.
Ms Robinson said a new home had been found for the dog.

Sheese, why didn t he just go to the SPCA in the first place. He should be fined for stupidity too!

August 25, 2006

Second dog to be put down

A second dog involved in an attack on a cat in Hamilton is to be destroyed.

Pit bull terrier Whetu and another dog – since put down – attacked the cat in Croall Cres in July, 2005.

Judge Neil MacLean, in the Hamilton District Court yesterday, found Toni Walker guilty of owning a dog (Whetu) that attacked a domestic pet, failing to keep a dog under control and not having the menacing dog muzzled.

Walker had pleaded guilty to failing to register and neuter Whetu but said the issue of the attack on the cat was a case of mistaken identity.

Judge MacLean ordered her to pay $5185 in solicitor's fees, court costs and for Whetu's feed for 13 months.

Attack horrifies woman

The Invercargill City Council is investigating whether a dog attack that happened on Sunday was by a dog that was ordered to be destroyed in June.

Sue Sheehan said she watched in horror as a large malamute husky dog "came from nowhere" and jumped through the open door of her car.
The malamute started ripping apart her bichon frise dog, Bobby, who had been sitting quietly in the car minding his own business. MORE

That malamute should be put down before he spreads his DNA

Dog, firemen in cliffhanger

Shady the two-year-old dog has had quite an adventure.

While being walked at Musick Pt, he was let off the lead for a quick run. "Then he saw a rabbit, which took off," says Howick resident Joan Humphrey, who was walking Shady, her daughter's dog.
Shady chased the rabbit out of sight.

Mrs Humphrey says it looked like the rabbit had gone over the cliff and Shady had followed. "I called frantically and I could hear him barking." She could tell by the barking that he was quite far down the cliff but she couldn't see him.

Shady didn't seem hurt but the tide was in and Mrs Humphrey became worried.

Howick College pupils Wendy Peagram, 18, and Nicole Leatham, 17, were at Musick Pt, taking pictures for a photography assignment, when they heard Mrs Humphrey calling out.
Wendy says Mrs Humphrey looked upset so they called the Fire Service. Howick firefighters soon arrived and assessed the situation.

Firefighter Dave Whistler got into his abseiling gear while Jeff Shrimpton found some steps and headed down to the beach. Just as Mr Whistler began lowering himself down the cliff, the barking stopped. Mr Shrimpton had waded through the water, grabbed Shady, swum back round to the beach and climbed up the steps.

"There was a great reunion. I'm very grateful for what they did," says Mrs Humphrey.
"We shouldn't have let him off the lead but there are so few places to exercise a dog. They don't get much exercise on a lead." Thats for sure !! especially for a two year old. Well, that dog now knows that he shouldnt be running too close to the cliff.

August 24, 2006

Tough dog bylaw on the way

Striking a balance between the recreational needs of dogs and public safety is the aim of a new Dog Control Bylaw likely to be adopted by the Far North District Council.

The council's Regulatory Services Committee voted last week to recommend that the council adopt an amended draft bylaw it publicly notified in April. Under the bylaw, the council will:
Restrict the number of dogs that people in built-up areas can own by requiring them to obtain a permit if they have two or more dogs;

Require dog owners to confine their dogs to their properties and, in some cases, require owners to fence their properties if the council impounds their dogs on three or more occasions;

Increase the number of public areas in the district where dogs are prohibited (these areas include children's playgrounds, some beaches and reserves);

Require dogs, in some instances, to be neutered when it has impounded them on three or more occasions;

Limit the length of leashes that dog owners use to restrain their dogs in public areas to two metres and require owners to keep their dogs in sight and within 10 metres in off-leash areas;

Make it an offence for a person to leave a dog tethered but unattended in a public place regardless of whether it is muzzled. MORE

and so... more laws will create safer communities !%!%.. in the middle of no where,at that!

August 19, 2006

Lending a helping paw

It was love at first sight for Natalie Brunzel when she met Austin, the mobility assistance dog who helps her with day-to-day tasks she cannot manage on her own.

"We spend every minute of the waking day together and even at night he sleeps beside my bed at the ready to help," says the Albany woman, who is wheelchair-bound.

"I take him shopping and even though he has little in the way of fashion tips, he happily pays across the counter. MORE>>

August 18, 2006

Police hunt man who bit dog

Blenheim police are on the hunt for a man who allegedly bit his dog yesterday morning.
A member of the public reported seeing the man bite his dog on the ear while walking through a car park near Redwoodtown.

The man, who may be charged with cruelty to an animal, is currently being sought by police, who say they are following up a positive lead.
A town with nothing better to do
We humans saw off cow's horn
We cut a head of a chicken with an axe
We brand a horse with red-hot iron
.... it pales in comparison, no?

Noises drive neighbours barking mad

Incessant barking dogs and Manfeild Park noise overnight have raised the blood pressure of Feilding residents.

A resident who wishes to remain unnamed is upset about a neighbouring dog that starts barking from 6.30am. This then causes other surrounding dogs to start barking as well.

The woman, also a dog owner, wrote to the Feilding Herald:
"My own dog has been taught that he doesn't bark unless someone comes on to his property. Other neighbours are also upset with the constant and annoying loud bark.
"None of us mind the sound of the fire siren, cars and bikes at Manfeild, but the incessant barking invades one's peace of mind."
The collars can be hired for $10 per week.
These collars give the dog an audible warning in the form of a beep that commands the dog to be quiet. If the dog heeds the warning and is quiet for 30 seconds, the collar automatically resets and goes back to standby mode.

Barking collars only work if the owner knows how to use it, otherwise it could do more damage than good. I hope that the dog control officer can show the proper use of the collar... a preventative measure instead of the 'here's a fine for $300 bucks'.

Why don't they just leave the dog in the house?

We have a neighbour who's dog barks each time you walk in the alley way. I don't mind that (well I do but... my dog just walks on, he's been taught NOT to bark) but what I DO mind if the dog seems so fierce when his noses is poking out of the wooden (broken) fence. You just wonder what will happen if the dog pushes his way out of the old decrepide fence?? Not only that, there's a pre-school right behind their house!!

Bird-kill mystery prompts warning

Swimmers and dog owners have been warned off New Plymouth's Ngamotu Beach after an algal bloom is suspected of killing a number of red-billed seagulls. More than 20 birds were found along a 200m stretch of Ngamotu Beach.

They say a brownish/green algae is most likely the cause. Seagulls at other beaches in the area had not been affected. MORE>>

August 17, 2006

Puppy love thrives at resthome

Andrew Gibson doesn't talk much but he sure lets Diana Sheehan know when he wants to see her dogs Kerri and Tarryn.

He signals for the dogs to come to him and when they are taken away he will stamp his foot and signal for them to come back.

Ms Sheehan and her dogs are part of the Outreach Therapy Pets, a joint initiative of St John and SPCA Auckland in which volunteers and their pets visit resthomes and hospitals to bring comfort to residents and patients. MORE>>

For information about becoming a volunteer, phone: 0800-780-780 or email:

'Panther' prints actually a dog

Paw prints found in mud on a Wakanui farm, near Ashburton, where a large black animal was spotted last week have turned out to belong to a dog.

Nathan Hawke, a spokesman for Orana Wildlife Park in Christchurch, said his specialist team had looked at photos of the paw prints and samples of faeces.

They belonged to a dog, he said. Sounds like the Lock-ness monster.. it was actually an elephant

A farmer who sighted the animal on Wednesday last week said when he went back four days later there were large deep paw prints at the site, with claw marks at the end of each toe. What did the farmer see? if not a dog?

A MAF biosecurity incursion investigator, Caleb King – who last week unsuccessfully scoured the area of the Ashburton River mouth after another reported sighting – said at the time his first reaction was that the print could have been made by a dog, because of the claw marks.

Cats generally only unsheathed their claws when hunting, not when walking, he said. Oh, I didn't know that!

Periodic sightings over the past 15 years of a large black cat-like animal, at sites ranging from the Mid Canterbury foothills to as far south as Lindis Pass, have fed speculation about a small panther roaming the region. Oh ya right!! Everytime someone says that you just think "how gullible people are". A panther!! in NZ?!?

August 14, 2006

Judge gives warning to dog owners

Unpredictable and volatile dogs will not be tolerated even on private property, a judge has warned after a dog attack left an Auckland pensioner with horrific injuries.

The judgment indicated that owners of dangerous dogs could face heavy penalties, even if their dogs were kept behind high fences. It effectively means they will face the same strict rules as homeowners with swimming pools and hot tubs. Good mix! spa dog baths!

Helen Marion Mackenzie, of Glendowie, faces a jail sentence after Judge David Burns found her guilty of two charges under the Dog Control Act of owning a dog that attacked a person causing serious injury. MacKenzie denied both charges, which carry a penalty of up to three years in prison, a fine of up to $20,000, or both, when she appeared in the Auckland District Court last week. Reading the rest of the article, you can see how bad this man has been affected. up to 3 years in prison for your dog is quite hefty. I say this by compairing the sentence of human attacks at night clubs and such. They never seem to get 3 years in jail, even though their lives have changed for ever too.

Judge Burns said that by strengthening the penalties in the Dog Control Act, Parliament had placed a strong obligation on owners to make sure other people were not endangered.

He likened the legislation to swimming pool owners' responsibility to properly fence their pools and safeguard children. Children could have entered Mackenzie's property. The act made no distinction between public and private land, he said.

Dogs that were "volatile, temperamental and likely to easily cause injury" were not to be tolerated. Oh, you mean like burglars!!

The conviction is not Mackenzie's first regarding the greyhound-cross dogs. In February last year she was convicted and fined after her dogs attacked another person and a dog. This time the Auckland City Council wants her to go to jail. JAIL! will this solve anything?!

Mackenzie owned two dogs that attacked Paul Kelly, then aged 74, when he visited her property on a pre-arranged business appointment in September last year. The male dogs attacked Kelly's thighs and arms, tearing skin from the top of his left hand down to the knuckles, and biting his right wrist through to the bone. On blood thinning medication, he bled profusely and was unconscious by the time he reached Middlemore Hospital. Oh shit!! Especially if he arranged to go see her..

Mackenzie broke down giving evidence as she described trying to stop the dogs, which rarely left her side when she was at home. Later that day she took the dogs, Jesse and James, to be put down. She needed tranquillisers to cope with the trauma of the incident and the loss of her dogs, she told the court. Noone wins... a sad day for everyone..

Defence counsel Greg Morrison argued that Mackenzie had taken all reasonable care to warn people about her dogs. They were confined behind a high, strong gate with warning signs and a buzzer to gain entry.

Morrison argued that if an owner was prosecuted every time a dog attacked when a visitor ventured on to the property the country would be flooded with prosecutions.

But Judge Burns said most dogs were benign and would not attack. So why is it that good dog owners are under the same rules as bad dog owners?? And the good dog owners can't even have their day in court because the process is flawed?

He questioned why Mackenzie continued to keep dogs that would not obey her. Her decision to put both dogs down on the day of the attack indicated she was aware of how serious the attack was. I have to agree with the judge here. why oh why keep a dog that you can't control? How can you have a pleasant walk when you are always wondering if there's another dog in the streets?

Judge Burns remanded Mackenzie until September 20 for sentence, and called for reparation and victim impact reports.

After the trial, Auckland City councillor Cathy Casey, a past president of a dog owners' group which lobbied against increasing restrictions of dogs, said the verdict was fair. "This man was an invited guest on the property. It could have been a child. This man could have been dead."

Many owners thought that as long as a dog was contained behind a fence they had fulfilled their responsibility. I thought that the rules said that a person has to have clear access to the front door. So I'm not sure why her property is not scrutenized (SP?) more?!?

"This is indicating that is not the case. If a charity collector, someone electioneering, or a courier goes on to your property then the dog still needs to be controlled and trained." Yup, agreed!

Barbara McCarthy, a lawyer who acts for the SPCA and in animal prosecution cases, said she was not surprised at the verdict. "A dog could bite you in someone's lounge while you were watching TV and the owner would still be liable." What happens if it's the invited guess who provokes the dog, and the dog defends itself?

But burglars take note. Providing safe passage to the front doorway does not include criminals.
Jackie Wilkinson, manager of service requests for Auckland City Environments, said people who were on a property without a lawful reason would not be viewed sympathetically.

Pensioner Paul Kelly thought he was going to die as he tried to stem the bleeding after being attacked by two pet greyhound-cross dogs. This could not have been a good experience. i do feel for him!

Now 75, he has badly scarred arms and hands. Nerve damage stops him from grasping things firmly. He can no longer tinker with car engines, play golf or hold a fishing rod. If he picks up a glass, he is likely to drop it. Oh no.... no more golf! I'm being tongue in cheek...

Ashamed of the scars, he wears gloves to hide his hands and to protect his wounds from the sun. The attack put him in Middlemore Hospital for nine days and forced him to move from Auckland to Christchurch, where his son could care for him. Nearly a year later, he misses his friends, and hopes to come home. Sheese... of course, this could have occurred for a variety of reasons too. Without sounding uncaring, many many people get into bad ways.. ie. being booted off the hospital waiting list is one of them!

On September 22 last year, Kelly answered an advertisement about building websites placed by Helen Mackenzie and arranged to meet her at 11am at her home.

But the meeting never happened. Instead Kelly, mistakenly went down a driveway to the back of Mackenzie's property rather than the front door and was attacked by the dogs, which leapt off a balcony and down a 1.8m fence. Funny how the important details of the articles are at the end!!

"They came over like a pair of bullets ... One went for the left leg and one went for the right."
When Kelly beat the dogs back with his briefcase, they attacked his arms. "If I had fallen over I would have been dead."

By the time Mackenzie pulled the dogs off, Kelly was bleeding badly and in shock. Mackenzie drove him to a medical centre, from where he was transferred to Middlemore Hospital.

The attack, he said, had changed his life. "It's affected my retirement. When you can't do things it knocks your spirit."

Warning to secure dogs

Twizel residents are being warned to ensure their dogs are secure following a weekend dog attack which saw in-lamb ewes having to be destroyed.

Mackenzie District Council animal control officer Scott Aronsen said it wasn't clear whether there had been one or two separate attacks on sheep grazing on Ben Ohau Station, on the outskirts of Twizel.

Mr Aronsen was first called to the property on Saturday morning. A dozen in-lamb merinos had to be destroyed at that stage as they all had puncture wounds to their sides.
He was called back to the property late yesterday afternoon after more injured animals were found in a mob about one kilometre away. A further 10 ewes had to be destroyed because of their injuries. The ewes and their lambs had an estimated value of around $3000. MORE>>

August 13, 2006

Barking dogs get collared

BARKING dogs are the target of a hi-tech scheme to give annoyed neighbours some peace and quiet.Local councils are introducing new technology – the Bark Counting Collar – which has been hailed a canine controversy peacemaker.

The matchbox-sized gadget has a microchip which counts how many times a dog barks – hour by hour – over 10 days.

It can prove once and for all which dogs in the neighbourhood are barking and for how long.
The counter, valued around $500, is being trialled by several councils, which place the collars on dogs at the centre of barking complaints. The collar has the backing of the state's Dog And Cat Management Board.
An expensive toy?! Why don't you just leave your dog inside the house!!

August 11, 2006

Dogs die in house blaze

Three pet dogs died in a fire that began in a basement and spread quickly to the upper rooms.
The blaze broke out in a Mt Wellington house on Tuesday at about 4.30am.
All of the occupants escaped but two people were injured, including one woman who had burns to her hands.

Deputy chief fire safety officer Jonathan Shelley says two people sleeping in a room next to the basement were lucky to get out.

Neighbour Karen Knight awoke to the sounds of the family yelling to get out of the house.
"We could see as soon as we got up that the basement was like an inferno," she says. MORE>>

August 10, 2006

Feeling the bite of dog attacks

Prosecutions against dog owners by the Manukau City Council have surged. Dog attacks on people and animals feature prominently in court cases.
Well in Chch, courts are full of stupid fines, like letting your dog pee on a neighbours fence unsupervised!! And the dog pound people prosecute you without a fair hearing... courts are filling up to be heard!

The council took 75 dog control prosecutions to Manukau District Court in June, compared with 55 in May and 28 in April. Of the June cases, 34 were for dogs attacking people, three involving serious injury. Nineteen cases were dogs attacking another animal.
"It's alarming that some people are still not getting the basics of dog control right," he says.
That's the problem with dog behind high fences and short leads. unsocialised dogs

"Those horrific experiences don't need to happen if dog owners adhere to the basics.

"Supervise children near dogs, contain your dog on your property and don't assume a dog is under control simply because it's on a lead."
so what they are saying is that dog training and dog education is the best prevention,... so why don't they say it in black and white?

August 09, 2006

Right breakfast the difference for working dogs

Working dogs are like athletes and need a diet to match, as Jude Gillies discovered when she met Mac the retired truck dog.

Jokes aside about not being able to teach old dogs new tricks, retired trucking contractor Owen Baigent says his faithful old dog Mac has a whole new lease of life.

Baigent puts it down to a new dog food that has given Mac a reprieve from arthritis. Oh, sounds like a commercial... free advertising!

A rising 11-year-old, Mac spent his life on the trucks with Baigent, working with unstinting enthusiasm until one day he refused to put a front paw down.
The $30 Baigent paid proved to be a bargain and he had Don the huntaway cross for another 18 years.
"In the end he was blind and deaf but he'd go anywhere and work for anyone."

When Baigent started up the transport business after the industry deregulated, he was one of the first in the business to have a working truck dog. "Now most of them have them."

A good dog can save a driver a lot of time, he says, "especially in Nelson where you have a lot of pickups and you have to get to the boat to Wellington or when it's hot and the stock don't want to move". Oh, I don't get it? how dogs a dog save a driver a lot of time??

Two generations later, Baigent's dog Mac, a grandson of Don, proved to be just as faithful and hardworking. A large dog with the short tail and rough, woolly coat of his jill smithfield bobtail breed, Mac was a natural worker.

"He started working at six months old. I wanted a dog that would work hard with the truck in sale yards. This little fella would load four units of stock non-stop. " What? the dog carries this?
And all the other truckies knew Mac.

"He'd work for anyone on any truck, he was so keen. He had such a natural ability and would make friends with anybody.

"He didn't even need commands. He just knew what to do." Dogs can be sooo doggish!

And he went everywhere with Baigent, covering all the South Island and half the North Island."
He was also known at stops all round the country. "People got to know him. He used to get a few treats from the cooks on the ferry and some of the hotels we'd stop at would have a few bones for him."

When he wasn't working the stock, Mac travelled in a box on the side of the truck, "never in the cab". Oh, I think I get it.. it's LIVE stock, we're talking about.. not boxes of stock DOH!

"It's a safety issue. A dog should be totally secured away from the driver. "But open the hatch of the box and he'd be out ready for work. "He was one in a million."

Which is why it was so devastating when Mac suddenly seemed lame.

"One day at the Brightwater sale yards he just wouldn't put his foot down."

While initially it seemed as if Mac had an injury or perhaps a splinter, the vet diagnosed arthritis, a common complaint in older dogs, especially working dogs.

After a series of injections to treat the painful arthritis, the vet advised trying a new dietary supplement to treat Mac's problem and, like magic, he was a new dog, says Baigent.

The joint-supplement dog food contained both glucosamine sulphate and omega 3 fatty acids, a substance that controls inflammation in the joint and blocks genes that produce cartilage-destroying enzymes, says the Vet Centre veterinarian Kelly Powell. If it works for dogs, I'm sure it's good for humans !

"I've had really good results. It increases antioxidants and vitamins and is really good for older dogs," she says.

Powell agrees diet and especially the omega 3 and glucosamine supplements have huge benefits to rejuvenate older working dogs.
"He still loves chewing on a bone. I think it's a natural thing."
But Baigent is adamant the diet supplements have worked for Mac and not just relieved the arthritis pain but also given him a new lease on life with a shiny coat and extra bounce.
Well, I feed my dog fish oil. I think he loves it. He's always had a shiny coat, so it's hard to say if it's working. But, hey, it's good for you.

"He's his old self again and full of energy and loves jumping up into the ute. "He thinks he's a puppy again."

Even if his working days are over, the value of diet is something Baigent says is easy to overlook.
And Gibbs agrees. He says working dogs are essential to the farming industry. "They're like a tractor, you've got to keep them well oiled."

Police dog gets his man

A burglar learned the law not only has a long arm but sharp teeth as well.

Police were sent to investigate after a report of suspicious activity on the Parklands Estate on Tamatea Drive, Napier, last night. Police Sergeant Nigel Formosa said today the area was cordoned off and a dog and handler sent into.

Two men were then spotted running towards a green belt beside the estate, and one of them was quickly brought down by the police dog.

He sustained several bite wounds requiring hospital treatment, Mr Formosa said.
"It was a bit silly to run. A dog can run faster than a person," he said.
A 32-year-old man and a 24-year-old man, both from Napier, had been arrested and charged with burglary.

August 06, 2006

I just wanted apology, says police dog victim

An innocent man bitten by a police dog says he would not have taken a $40,000 lawsuit to the Court of Appeal if police had simply apologised. That's why you never hold your breath with them. They always think they're right, and if they think they may be wrong, they'll try to make it right. Planting of evidence comes to mind! Nothing like that happened to me, but one reads a lot, and it creates an opinion...

West Aucklander Matini Vaihu has just been given permission to take his claim back to court. The case revolves around whether a police dog's actions can be separated from that of a handler. Well, if you can be charged for hurting a police dog because it's considered part of the police force, I don't think that one can separate a dog's actions from that of a handler. Besides, the dog is as good or as bad as the dog owner...

Four years ago, Vaihu had an artery in his left arm severed and he lost two litres of blood after being bitten by police dog "Willis" in New Lynn, Auckland. Police had suspected the then 25-year-old of being involved in kicking signs over at a local petrol station. Racial, I'd say!

Vaihu was in fact vomiting in a nearby carpark after suffering stomach cramps induced by pills taken for his kidney problems. He was on dialysis at the time.

"I'm sick of it," Vaihu said yesterday. "I never cared about the money. I cared about the officer - if he came to the hospital and said he was wrong, I would have done nothing about it."

Vaihu said he could hear the police dog's breath while vomiting in the carpark. He had pulled over while on his way home from his girlfriend's house.

"I turned around to get into my car and the dog jumped from the other side, right towards my groin. I pushed it away and he grabbed my arm and took pieces out of my arm."

Vaihu's left arm was already weakened because it was where he had a shunt inserted for his regular dialysis sessions. He says it took about 20 seconds before the dog's handler, Constable Chris Taylor, arrived.

As soon as he realised it was a police dog, Vaihu said he laid down on the ground. While he tried to explain why he was vomiting in the carpark, Taylor told him he was under arrest. I never heard of vomiting to be a crime !!

"I tried to explain my condition but it took a long time for them to ask for an ambulance to the hospital."

A St John's report says Vaihu was lying in a pool of blood when ambulance officers arrived. He spent four days in hospital having his arm treated.

Read more of this honor story!

August 05, 2006

This week, the dog test.

Cowling family members have disconnected their wetback in an effort to crank up the heat, and the family dog is so hot she has left the lounge. That's the dog test. Read more here

Labour insiders branded 'dogs'

A leading unionist has lashed out at Labour Party insiders, calling them "dogs" – despite pledging to join the party during her campaign for a top union position.

That expression really annoys me... dogs behave as well as their owners teach them. So what does this say about 'dogs' as an expression to use for our politicians. hum...

August 04, 2006

Mayor gets in behind public exercise area for dogs

A long-running debate about whether Hawera should have a public dog exercise area on unused council land has become a dogfight, and South Taranaki Mayor Mary Bourke is barking the loudest.

She rose in the public forum, before a meeting of the environment and hearings committee on Wednesday, to voice her opinion that the High Rd site must become an exercise area. "And if you don't make what I think is the right decision, I'll have another crack when it comes before council on August 21." MORE>>

August 03, 2006

Penny gets Cliff talking

Cliff Millen had hardly said a word for eight months until a dog with big brown eyes and ears came into his life. A simple "yes" or wave of the hand to say no was all the 80-year-old stroke victim could manage.

But that all changed when Guy and Debbie Fenton brought Penny to visit residents at Albany's Beechworth Home and Hospital.

"He reached out as soon as he saw her and said `hello girl, come here girl'. He would only talk to the dog but after more visits he started talking to us," Mrs Fenton says.

The couple are part of Outreach Therapy Pets, a joint initiative of St John and SPCA Auckland, where volunteers visit resthomes and hospitals with their pets to bring comfort to residents and patients. (...)
Jean Rosenfeldt, who turns 70 this month, says Penny's visit "is the best birthday gift I could ever have". Isn't that great! Such a simple pleasure to have animals in one's life!!
Oh, what a great story !! Just a question? are these dogs microchipped? They are working dogs! . Read the rest of the story here
To learn more about Outreach Therapy Pets, phone: 0800 780 780 or email: enquiries/

Dog owner ordered pitbulls to attack man, court told

A Wellington dog owner deliberately ordered his two pitbull terriers to attack another man after the sale of a 4WD went wrong, a court was told yesterday. In Wellington District Court, Ryan Jay Kaden, 26, denied assault with a weapon – his dogs Bonnie and Clyde.

The charge stemmed from an incident at Wellington's Owhiro Bay (I used to live there !) when a discussion about the payment for a 4WD took place four men including Kaden, Clifford Denham, 35, and his brother Clive, 34.

The Denham brothers were to receive the keys to the 4WD in exchange for $160. However, $200 was demanded, which led to an argument and an altercation between the men. Hein? for $40 bucks.. someone is struggling. More like the taxpayers are!! How much is this court case going to cost?

The Denhams' claimed Kaden – unemployed and now living in Hawke's Bay – ordered his dogs to attack Clifford Denham. Gee, I can't even get my dog to lick me! Well okay.. they've been trained NOT to. yuk!

Crown prosecutor Nick Chisnall said one of the dogs –Clyde – bit Clifford Denham on the top of the head, leaving him bleeding from his scalp which required four stitches, while Bonnie – the smaller of the two – bit him on the cheek.

Clifford Denham told the court Kaden shouted "I'll get the dogs on you".
Kaden's lawyer Robert Stevens challenged Clifford Denham's claim Kaden had opened his car door to let the dogs attack, instead claiming the door was opened for the dogs to have a run. Gee, that sounds more like it. How many people actually train their dogs to 'get 'em'? If the dogs did do it, it's probably because they were trying to 'save' their master! If so, then... they are a bit unpredictable.

Mr Stevens said Kaden never encouraged the dogs to attack and the story had been invented to cover for Clive Denham who had lashed out at Kaden with a shovel. A ha!! now this sounds more like it... the truth comes out.

The trial before Judge Jan Kelly is expected to conclude tomorrow. I'll make sure I get the end of this story

Council worker in dog dispute quits his job

A Waikato District Council staff member whose dog bit a member of the public has quit.

Since 2001 Dion Gough has managed and lived on the 121.46ha Wainui Reserve in Raglan, but that employment will end next month after an Employment Relations Authority dispute between the two parties.

Mr Gough took a case against the council after it asked him to remove two mastiffs and a rottweiler – named Viking, Monster and Smash – after six alleged attacks by the dogs.
The authority found the dogs were dangerous and sent the groups to mediation to try to find a way the dogs could go and Mr Gough could stay. MORE>>
apparently, they only had one complaint, so you have to wonder what's the real reason for resigning. Sounds like good people leaving for their seats to be filled by incompetents (oops, can I say that?) I could be totally wrong... someone who knows, pls correct me !!

August 01, 2006

Award surfaces for dog rescue

It was stormy at sea when Papakura Coastguards sighted Kotiro, the dog that had been missing for 11 days, on the coastline at Karaka.

The Papakura Rescue One Coastguard crew found the sharpei-labrador cross 1.5 nautical miles from where she went missing at Weymouth Beach. That was six months ago.

Last Thursday crew members were given an SPCA award in recognition of their contribution to animal welfare. (...)

Before the rescue could be discussed with Mr Raumati he was overboard with a rope attached to the boat and swimming to Kotiro.

The dog was in good spirits despite having cuts on her feet and losing a good deal of weight.
Northern Regional Coastguard operations manager James Lacey says he's proud of the Papakura unit.

"They put in the extra effort to help find the dog," he says.

"It's a credit to all Coastguard volunteers and the amount of effort they put into helping in their communities."

Buck retires after 8 years on the force

It's the end of an era for police dog Buck. Last week was his ninth birthday and handler Senior Constable Grant Egan has decided to retire him after eight years on the force. I wonder how much the dogs earn? Do they get super??

Mr Egan says he is going to miss Buck, who has been living and working with him since he was 11 months old. I know the feeling!

"He's been a great dog and I'll be lucky to find another one as good as him," he said.
In 2004 he won the national police dog trials and came second in 2005.

The top 12 dogs in the country are selected to attend this week-long competition in Wellington where dogs are put to the test doing everything involved with policing, including tracking and obedience. MORE>>
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