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 30, 2007

Mayor candidate sponsored by a dog

With some ten odd candidates lining up for the governance of one of the finest municipalities in the land, the mayoral race is looking more like an 'every man and his dog' race. "Mayor Blair" Anderson is the only Mayoral Candidate to be sponsored by a dog.

read more | digg story

Intimidation used to hide dog attacks

Some Manukau residents fearful of retribution from neighbours are making dog complaint statements to officers in supermarket carparks.

But many won't go as far as appearing as witnesses in court because their neighbours might find out who complained.

And that is why many serious dog attacks on children and adults aren't prosecuted, says Manukau City Council contractor DSS Animal Management.

But a signed statement is needed before his team will approach a dog's owner.
"We can't just go on the doorstep and say that an anonymous person has made a complaint.
"We do not respond to anonymous tips.
"You can't uphold the law on hearsay."

But..but... that is exactly what happened to us. When we wanted to go to court, they didn't allow us!

But if the matter is very serious, for instance a dog attack that could lead to a prosecution, Mr Gillingwater tells complainants they will have to be prepared to appear as a witness in court.

"They don't want to go to court because it means they will not be anonymous any more. So they won?t sign statements," he says.

"It's very frustrating because we can resolve quite a few of these incidents if people have the resolve."

But but... I say... it always seems that it's the dog owner who is quilty before proven innocent, instead of us being innocent, and they have to prove the guilt.
Once you get someone like myself angst about what happened... do you think I'll complain to the dog pound guy knowing that he won't want to 'resolve' but convict?

He has heard about children being attacked by dogs at family gatherings and no one has complained.

Why? not for intimidation, but because of dog being put down, and dog fine!

"Sometimes we don't even get contacted and some of them are quite nasty attacks," Mr Gillingwater says.

for the reason above... people can, you know, help themselves. Why should we have to 'tell someone'? Why does a third party HAVE to be involved??

People go to the media or ambulance service for help but don't take the extra step.
But these problems have been around for years in many communities, he says.

And probably more so since the dog laws have changed to be more punitive!

Dog complaints in Manukau dropped from 6918 in 2005-06 to 6745 in 2006-07.

Well, why don't you say DOG LAWS ARE WORKING !!

A council report says the number of dog attacks on people was unchanged at 256. But complaints about dogs being aggressive to people increased from 439 to 490.

The report says it is too early to determine whether the increase is a real jump in aggressive dog incidents or the result of heightened awareness, perception of risk or willingness to call the council. EXACTLY !

Blind man evicted for keeping dog

A blind man is being evicted from his Christchurch City Council flat for keeping a dog which he said turned his life around.

Yes, and I'm sure that a lot of people (vision NOT impaired) would say the same thing. The Foundation of the Blind is working hard to educate society that having a disability does not mean that one should be treated differently.
Community support manager Catherine McDonald said Hardy had been told he would have to get the dog registered as a guide dog if it was to stay.
I saw him on TV last night. The dog in the Dairy jumped up onto the counter, and the box of chocolate bars flew off the counter. The TV camera stopped rolling, and my question is... did he or the dog pick up the mess?

"Two months later the dog was still at his unit and we'd received complaints from other residents about the dog. These related to the dog barking and tenants feeling both intimidated and frightened by its presence."

McDonald said it was a "fierce looking dog".
If he were a Beagle... now he would have won some hearts:)

"Our prime concern is the wellbeing and safety of all our tenants.
One law for all... sorry buddy, but I have to agree with their decision.

"You can imagine it, if one of our tenants or a member of the public gets bitten by another tenant's dog."

The council had tried to go into mediation with Hardy about the dog earlier this month, but he did not turn up. MORE>>
Hum.... one can't mediate by themselves.
The dog was "gentle as", Hardy said.
"He doesn't sit here and nut off. He's not a noisy dog, he's pretty quiet."
"pretty" is the word that I'd like to know more... pretty quiet means a lot to different people.
I'm not sure why this even got to be on Cambell Live?? Is this a matter of 'the poor blind guy?"

August 27, 2007

Dog put down after family cat attacked

A Blenheim mother is upset that just one of two dogs has been put down following an attack on her family's cat.

Denise Spence said she and her 13-year-old daughter saw the two dogs attack their cat near Pattie Pl in Springlands earlier this month.

Marlborough District Council animal control says the older dog has been put down and the younger dog classified as menacing, requring microchipping and a muzzle. However Mrs Spence says it should be put down. The dogs had already killed two or three cats in the area, she said.

"It's just not on. I want to get another cat but it might be killed. It could even be a kid next. I find it a bit strange both were not put down after the second time."


Dogs replace children in Japan

Dogs now outnumber children aged 10 and under in Japan as the country's childless turn to canines. (there were 13.1 million dogs in 2006 .... now that's a lot of dog shit!!)
A specialist in cataracts, Horikoshi is now at the top of her profession and likes to spend her money on travel, her black Porsche and her dogs. Her friends share her choice.

"My friends - married, one poodle, no child. Married, two Chihuahuas, no child. Married, one Chihuahua, no child," she counts off her fingers. With its low birth-rate and rapidly ageing population, Japan is considered a saturated market by many.

Japan is also acting as a pet fashion trend-setter. Where but in Tokyo would you find a toy poodle in a bumble-bee costume peeking out of a stroller? Or a dog-themed boy-band whose members sport furry hats with dog ears and cradle live pooches?

NOT all is lovely though... In Japan, the dogs themselves often suffer. Many are born with deformities due to overbreeding. Puppy mills churn out one litter after another from the same mother until their fertile lives end and they are abandoned or killed. Most dogs sold in Japan come from such puppy mills.

I have lived in Japan, and I have seen some really poor situations where a dog was on a short chain, and was walking in circles, literally, and he was going insane.

I saw Huskies in the middle of Japan's HOT summer... Dogs never go indoors, and now, I suppose they are all small, and get tucked in their jammies.

August 26, 2007

Police dog gets chomp on copper thief

A police dog attacked by a copper thief on the run 'gave better than he got', police say.

North Shore police senior sergeant Jenni Richardson says at about 4.15am on August 17 a member of the public was alerted to a crime by the noisy removal of large sheets of copper metal.


Dog saves owners from house fire

A Brisbane couple have man's best friend to thank for saving them from a fire which ripped through their home early this morning.

The 44-year-old man and 32-year-old woman were asleep in bed in their Redcliffe property, north of Brisbane, about 1am when it is believed an electrical fault caused part of the house to catch alight.

They were roused by their pet dog and managed to escape.


Dogs rescued from life of neglect

Three sick and neglected dogs, rescued the SPCA, have settled in to their new homes, but will require medication for the rest of their lives.

Cavalier king charles spaniels Jasper, Monty and Momma Cav were seized from their Lower Moutere home in January after a member of the public called the SPCA concerned they had been left unattended.

They had, and the man left to care for them while their owner was away was taken to court by the SPCA. Zane Dylan Whitbourne Parker admitted to a charge of failing to comply with the dogs' needs, and a charge of failing to make provisions to meet those needs in the Nelson District Court earlier this month.

He was convicted and ordered to pay a fine of $250 on each charge, and pay vet fees of $3700.


August 23, 2007

Many snowy paws set to mush on in sled festival at Cardrona Snow Farm

The hounds are about to take to the snow in the next two months as some of the biggest dog sled races in New Zealand are held at the Snow Farm, Cardrona.

The sport of dog sledding has increased rapidly in the country and organisers of events have received many registrations for the races.


The Wanaka Sled Dog Festival is run by the Southern Regions Sled Dog Club and club secretary Sarah Campbell, of Dunedin, said 40 entries had been received from throughout the country, which would mean about 180 dogs would descend on Wanaka for the five-day event.

Oh keep your kids inside !!

"This would the the second-highest number of entries we have received. What makes the festival different to most races is that competitors get to race on the snow, where most events in the country are in rigs along forest tracks," she said.


August 21, 2007

Owner warns of risk from sultanas after death of pet dog

An Invercargill woman is warning the public to be extra vigilant about feeding their dogs treats, after her pet dalmatian died from a suspected case of sultana poisoning at the weekend.

Kerryn Douglas said the drama unfolded after 10-year-old Floyd got into a packet of sultanas left sitting in a sleepout at her home on Friday.

However, it was over-indulgence rather than anything more serious that was playing on her mind when Floyd was struck down by vomiting that afternoon. "He had more than half a kg of sultanas – he really gutsed himself," she said. (...)

The ingestion of grapes and raisins had been associated with acute renal disease that could be fatal in dogs, although it was not known why, Miss Clarke said.

She said she had not heard of another case of sultana poisoning during five years as a veterinarian in the UK and New Zealand.

Other things dangerous to dogs are:

Alcoholic beverages
Apple seeds
Apricot pits
Cherry pits
Chocolate (baker's,semi-
...sweet, milk, dark)
Coffee (grounds, beans, ...chocolate covered ...espresso.beans)
Hops (used in home beer ...brewing)
Macadamia nuts
Moldy foods
Mushroom plants
Mustard seeds
Onions, onion powder
Peach pits
Potato leaves and stems ...(green parts)
Rhubarb leaves
Tea (caffeine)
Tomato leaves and stems ..(green parts)
Yeast dough

Dog owner lobbies for safe park in city

Tracy Kirkley is lobbying to have a special park built for Waitakere city's dog owners.

The Te Atatu resident says it's hard to find a place where she can let her siberian husky Missy off her leash without being a nuisance to others.

"There is no enclosed dog park that I am aware of within the city," she says.


Council public affairs manager Wally Thomas says the idea will be considered as part of a review of the Waitemata Harbour foreshore reserves management plan.

Submissions closed on August 20 and hearings will be held on September 4.

A final decision will be made later in the month.

Owner's whistle brings stolen dogs running

After travelling thousands of kilometres looking for his stolen dogs Jack Mills' journey has come to an end - happily for both man and beast.


"I've travelled all around the back of Port Waikato, to Rotorua, the Hunuas and up north," he said.

"I went anywhere I could think of where I would find a farmer who was lambing because that's where I thought they might be.

"I've done miles and miles but it's all worth it."

The dogs were found in the Northland town of Kaikohe after his story aired on TV One's Close Up show.

Mr Mills received a phone call that night telling him the dogs had been seen on a farm.

Police searched two properties and found Trace and June at a farm just south of Kaikohe.

Kaikohe Senior Sergeant Justin Rogers said a 27-year-old unemployed man has been charged with receiving stolen property.


Mr Mills' plight sparked an outpouring of offers from farmers all around the country.

"I got many, many offers from people with young dogs and dogs that were working and would do me for the trial season."

He was given a young pup named Boy who helped him on the farm in the absence of other dogs.

The outpouring of generosity has helped restore the pensioner's faith in humanity.

"New Zealand people are still pretty good - they're still true-blue Kiwis."

Mr Mills is now recognised by people in the street because of all the media attention.

"I'm the famous dog finder."

He said he's extremely grateful to everyone who played a part in his dogs' return.

Mr Mills leases land in Flat Bush and uses his specially trained dogs to help him farm 200 sheep.

The life member and past president of the Papakura Sheepdog Trial Club trains sheepdogs and has close to 40 trophies from dog trials around the country.

Fighting dogs left to die

Organised dog fighting has apparently claimed another two victims after two dogs were found dead in a Mangere park.

When Ms Border found them their coats were thick with blood.

The puncture wounds in their hind legs were so deep that muscle and tendons were exposed.

"It's just horrendous, dogs fighting to their death."

Ms Border said organised dog fights are thought to be increasing.MORE>>

August 18, 2007

Mum pleads case for dog owners

The family of mauled toddler Aotea Coxon have asked police not to charge the dog's owners. (...)

Police have yet to decide whether to charge the owners.

However, Coxon said she did not think they should be prosecuted.

"They seem pretty good people," she said. "The dog was a family dog, and they had kids of their own.

"They've gone through enough, I would say, so I wouldn't want them charged.

"It would be a different story if it was someone with a real bad dog."

Coxon said the owners had sent a teddy bear and flowers to Aotea, and were keen to meet to apologise in person. MORE>>

August 16, 2007

Dog fight ends in fine and ban

A Manurewa man has pleaded guilty to an animal cruelty charge after an SPCA inspector found a dog with multiple puncture wounds at his address.

(...) It had multiple puncture wounds to its legs and dried blood on its neck and ears. (...)

He pleaded guilty to one count of failure to provide treatment to alleviate pain and distress and was ordered to pay the SPCA $1746.84 in reparation. He was also disqualified from owning an animal for three years.

"Sausage dogs" in decline in homeland

Germans are turning their backs on dachshunds, the short-legged, long-bodied "sausage dogs" which are as much a national emblem as beer and lederhosen.

The German Dog Association (VDH) says only 7,158 dachsund, or "dackel", puppies were born in the country last year and the birth rate has dropped by about 35 per cent in the last decade.

"Dackels are in decline because German owners have a far wider range of breeds to choose from than they did 20 years ago," said Birgit Buttner of the VDH. More>>

Letters, August 16: Dog decision causes outrage

As the organising teacher of the Hillcrest Normal School annual cross-country, I am outraged we have not been allowed to use the hillside lawn at the Hamilton Gardens to run our event this year because of a complaint by a dog walker.

Last year we ran two events on the hillside lawn which is a designated dog exercise area. The first was our school cross-country with about 350 children running; the second was the Southeast Waikato Primary Schools cross-country which included nine schools and about 300 children.

While we were setting up one morning two dog walkers approached us. They voiced annoyance at us using the lawn as that was where they liked to exercise their dogs. I assume these people made a complaint. MORE>>

Yes, we are now the complaining society. Two people out walking their dogs in a dog park, wanting to finally let their dog off the lead because there's not alot of places to do this, then a bunch of kids start running through the dog park. Damn! Dogs back on the lead.

Apology over advice that led to death of dog

Manukau City Council has apologised to the family whose terrier was killed by a pit bull after one of its call centre operators gave their daughter incorrect advice.

The council has admitted the employee did not follow procedure by advising Laura Russell and her friends to take the stray to the nearest house.

The call should have been immediately put through to DSS Animal Management, the contractor that carries out dog control on behalf of the council.

Acting on the advice the children tied up the dog which later became vicious and tried to attack the group. MORE>>

Few schools use dog safety lesson

Animal education officers are disappointed at the low number of Christchurch schools using a free dog-bite prevention lesson.

Christchurch City Council animal control education co-ordinator Jim Stokes said 50 schools had been approached with the offer of the dog-safety presentation, but only 20 had welcomed the educators.

Stokes said requests often increased slightly after incidents such as the Jellie Park mauling of two- year-old Aotea Coxon at the weekend.

"It's absolutely disappointing," Stokes said. "It's free – dog registration fees pay for it – and the kids go home with a great message."

Stokes said two people a day were bitten or rushed at by a dog in Christchurch. MORE>>

2 people a day compared to how many children get beaten up by a family member?!?

Only 20 out of 50 schools accepted. Now this would be a great opportunity of asking why? I'd hate to wonder why?

It's something like drug education, isn't it? I mean, every one seems to think it's a terrible problem, but when the city council and the police have a drug meeting, only a handful come along.

So perhaps we should look at why these types of messages aren't successful...

August 11, 2007

Judge dogs on deeds, not breeds, say anti-ban vets

Banning more types of dogs will not help to reduce attacks because it is not clear which breeds are responsible, say veterinarians.

And they should know... they are vets for god sakes... prime minister helen isn't a vet so i'm not sure why her words weight more that a professionals words. The media.. always looking for a sound bit!
But Pieter Verhoek, president of the Companion Animal Society, an association of vets who care for household pets, says there is no need for additional legislation.

"I don't think adding dog breeds to the restricted list would help. The laws are already in place, they just need to be utilised properly. Dogs should be judged on deeds, not breeds.
Hey I just said that..!!

Instead of restricting dog breeds further, Mr Verhoek believes that education is the key to reducing dog attacks. Children need to be taught how to approach dogs and how to respond to dangerous situations.

Hey, and I said that too! It's great to know that your opinion is worthy :)

Dog-control critics attack microchips

Microchipping of dogs is ineffective and may be putting people off registering their animals, say critics of the electronic control measure.

Well, apparently, from the media story that I find (and you can find on this blog), it seems that dog registration is on the rise. How do they actually know, I don't know. How do you know what you don't know? How do you know a dog should be registered if you don't know that dog exist?

The claim is part of a new wave of criticism of Government dog-control measures after the mauling of 2-year-old Aotea Coxon last Sunday by a dog that escaped from a back yard in Christchurch.

National Party spokeswoman Sandra Goudie said the microchipping policy had failed and could be putting people off registering their dogs because of the extra cost.

But the Government says it is far too early to judge measures such as microchipping.

"Microchipping is for dogs which are newly registered, so it was always going to take time to phase in," said Prime Minister Helen Clark.

"It gives us, of course, a better database of what is considered a dangerous dog." But it's only good if you get a qualified dog trainer to CERTIFY that this dog or that dog is dangerous. Then you'll need a proven assessment form that goes with it. Just saying that the breed CAN BE dangerous, doesn't mean that that particular dog, in that particular household is dangerous.

Figures on dog attacks are sketchy, but the Weekend Herald has obtained figures from the Accident Compensation Corporation that show the number of claims for dog bites is steadily increasing. (read my other commentary for the reason this might be)

In Auckland, the number of claims for dog bites rose from 29, costing $54,000, in 1999-2000 to 62, costing $227,000, in 2006-07.

Health dollars?? inflation??

National figures for the same period rose from 101 claims costing $176,000 to 252 claims costing $836,000.

While the Government asked for patience on microchipping, Ms Goudie said, public safety was "the whole point of why they were introducing it".

She was awaiting an update from the Department of Internal Affairs on the effect of microchipping.

"It has increased the costs and processes, so it might just have tipped the balance in putting more people off registering and monitoring their dogs," she said.

New Zealand Kennel Club senior vice-president Martin Hewitt said microchipping would have little effect in controlling dangerous dogs.

"We fail to see how it is seriously going to effect a reduction in dog attacks," he said.

"Many of the dogs are unregistered anyway, and microchipping will do nothing to stop an attack."

Education about dogs was important, and the club promoted the idea of dog owners, rather than their dogs, being licensed.

Associate Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta said local councils throughout the country had welcomed a "whole suite" of new tools for dog control when they were introduced in 2003.

Penalties for irresponsible dog owners were also increased, to a maximum of three years in prison and a $20,000 fine, from three months and a $5000 fine.

Ms Mahuta said microchipping would improve councils' ability to track dogs to their owners and would therefore also improve safety. I don't know where the logic in this is... help?!?

The minister denied the Government was not doing enough to stop dog attacks. Of course, the minister would.. wouldn't you? I mean, then the minister would have to go to jail too... he'd be responsible for that Chch attack. Sounds just as logical as what Ms Mahuta said.

"I think the strengthening of the Dog Control Act has helped councils to better manage the dog population. We want to continue to strengthen them." Of course you do... the more you 'strengthen then' the more money you get in your coffers..

At the end of this month, the Department of Internal Affairs will present a report on possible further measures to strengthen dog-control laws. I guess we'll see a whole new range of possibilities, and I betcha, they wouldn't even go near dog education and how to fund this..


Editorial: More bans on breeds no answer

Simple solutions have a particular appeal in the aftermath of an incident such as the savaging of 2-year-old Aotea Coxon by a dog in a Christchurch park. This is especially the case for politicians, who must offer immediate answers to an appalled public. Simplicity does not always equate to good sense, however. So it is with the Prime Minister's suggestion that the best way to stop dog attacks would be to extend the list of banned breeds. Not only has this failed to work elsewhere but it delays an effective response by tackling the problem from the wrong angle.

I wonder if Helen and Dunny boy (her side kick who always has a opinion, and shouldn't even be in parliament... he wasn't even elected to represent ME)

(...) Why not, then, simply extend the ban, an approach endorsed by United Future leader Peter Dunne, who said the eight serious attacks reported by the media in the past year had all involved pitbull terriers, bull mastiffs or stafforshire bull terriers?

The answer is that dogs of any breed are capable of attacking people if they are not trained properly or are mistreated by their owners. ( blah blah.. read full article)

The Prime Minister was on sounder ground when she noted that a review of the 2003 law, commissioned three months ago, would examine the level of enforcement by local councils. The act attracted most publicity because of its microchipping provisions, but also increased the maximum penalty that can be imposed on irresponsible dog owners to three years in prison and a $20,000 fine. That replaced previous punishment of three months' jail and a $5000 fine, the inadequacy of which had been magnified by an apathetic judiciary.

The act sent a strong signal to dog owners. But DID it really ?!? all it did was have dog owners NOT responsible when their dog attack because they are afraid of what's going to happen to their dog, and themselves, for that matter. $$$$ and FINES aren't the answer!

But the message will be heeded only if the law is applied strictly. And that would allienate many many people!

Ensuring that must, as the Prime Minister suggests, be one strand of the Government's response. The other should be the education of owners. Only individual dogs are dangerous, and that is generally a reflection of their owners. Dogs that are chained up all day, rarely socialised or are treated badly will become aggressive and a danger to the public. People must be made aware of the need to socialise their dogs, and to have them properly trained, logically through the licensing of owners.

Helen Clark bemoaned the fact that previous calls for a tougher regime had been thwarted by "pushback" from responsible dog owners and breeders. More accurately, it was a case of better counsel prevailing. The toughening of the law in 2003 followed an attack on a 7-year-old girl in an Auckland park. This sparked near hysterical calls, such as that every dog should be on a leash and muzzled. Dunny Boy says the same thing today

Eventually, a parliamentary select committee sensibly toned down the more drastic provisions of the legislation, notably extreme fencing provisions. The upshot was an act that laid the foundation for a significant reduction in dog attacks. Did it?? really?? and this attack is less severe?? How many attacks DON"T we hear about !! As my statistician professor said: Statistics, statistics, and more lies

The Government's main priorities now must be to ensure that law is working and that dog owners are in no doubt about their responsibilities. Of course THEY ARE !! freggin' hell... I'm sick of this bashing of good dog owners !!

Owner of family pet that tore into 2-year-old in park could face prison

The owner of a roaming dog that mauled a 2-year-old girl in a Christchurch park is expected to be charged with an offence that can mean jail.


Animal control team leader Mark Vincent, of the Christchurch City Council, said the attack was a reminder that despite rules, regulations and surveillance by dog control officers, sometimes "dreadful attacks" still occurred.

The dog in this case was not on the council's Dangerous Dogs Register of about 180 dogs that had bitten or attacked a person.

"If you have a breed of dog that has a history of attacking people or other dogs, it would be sensible to take your dog to a dog training club or obedience school. And keep it on a leash when out in public." MORE>>

Yes sensible alright, but who wants a dog attacking another dog at a dog school (chuckle)

'Seig heil' court greeting for police dog accused

A man accused of killing police dog Enzo entered the dock in Tauranga District Court to a call of "sieg heil" from the public gallery this afternoon.

As he was being ushered in Tairyn Murphy glanced at a handful of supporters, including his partner and a young boy.

Acknowledging the Nazi greeting adopted by the Mongrel Mob as their gang slogan, he called: "They've f... beat me up." MORE>>

There's more to this story than meets the eye... we'll keep a watch on for this one...

August 10, 2007

Kids at 'significant' risk from dogs

Dog attacks pose a "significant health hazard" for New Zealand, with children under five the victims in a quarter of hospital cases, research has found.

University of Otago senior lecturer David Healey, an expert in forensic dental evidence, analysed dog- bite statistics for an article in today's New Zealand Medical Journal.

"Clearly, the incidence of both fatal and non-fatal dog-bite attacks has increased in New Zealand over the past 10 years. This trend is in line with overseas findings. However, we still have a long way to go before experiencing the almost epidemic levels seen in the United States in recent years."

This is a great opportunity to ask... why? why in the last 10 years? What has changed?

1) dog left alone at home-- less mothers at home.
2) dog not socialised as they used to
3) today's social trend of 'doggie day care' reflects the sad fate of our dog's lives...
4) mother's driving kids to school. It used to be that the mom, dog, and the kids walked to school- dogs had opportunity of meeting kids.
5) kids not been socialised around dogs- kids are now afraid of dogs because media bashing, therefore parents are afraid for the kids. Dogs can sense this fear, and yamo!
6) dog now in high fenced ground, making the prey drive even more pronounced. You hear dogs bark behind the fence.-- solution, keep dogs inside, and even more caged up !
7) dog owners have less time to walk their dogs, as their busy lives take precedence. Less exercise, more boredom, more room for more sneakiness from dog...
8) what do YOU think? (comment at the end)

Prime Minister Helen Clark said this week that she favoured tough dog laws, after two-year-old Aotea Coxon was savaged by a dog in a Christchurch park.

No solution. You can't make a law about making dog user-friendly, just like you can't make a law that bans smaking..

In April, she ordered a review of dog laws after Murupara woman Virginia Ohlson was mauled to death. She said further blacklisting of breeds should be considered.

Ya but... this case was about a woman who didn't take care of her dogs... they bit her because they were mal-treated!

Mr Healey said New Zealand was known to have suffered five deaths related to dog bites.

The first was in 1969, when a farmer was killed by a mixed-breed dog.

What were the circumstances? I do know that some farmers were very cruel to their animals in those days..

Children aged under five accounted for nearly a quarter of all hospital admissions for dog bites. The high rate could probably be explained by youngsters' lack of physical strength or motor skills. They could also act in ways that animals perceived as threatening or aggressive.

"Specifically, they maintain eye contact, and their eye level is often the same as that of a dog."

I totally agree!

They were more likely to suffer injuries to the head.


Male dogs were involved in 80 per cent of all bites and dogs that had not been neutered were more likely to bite.

Lets ban male gender... !

New Zealand appeared to compare favourably with other countries for admissions, the research says.

The incidence rate for dog bites in 2002 was 8.3 per 100,000 people - a figure similar to that previously seen in Australia.

But in the United States, the rate for bite-related hospital visits was 12.9 per 10,000 people in the early 1990s - more than 10 times the New Zealand rate.

Remember that in the United States, there are more apartment buildings in which dogs reside in. There isn't a back yard, there's just a balcony. Dog are left there to yak all day, increasing their prey drive. Obviously, this isn't the only reason, but city planning is different than here. Not that many apartment dwellers here (high rises)

Mr Healey studied the case of a Dunedin woman, Carol Taylor, who was savaged to death in 2004 by her large pet bull mastiff dog.

He said she had Huntington's disease, which could be characterised by involuntary movements, erratic behaviour and aggressiveness.

Was the dog properly exercised? What was the quality of life for the pooch?

"Coupled with a large, powerful un-neutered male dog in a small enclosed area, this factor may have tipped the balance."

And so... they take this example for the fear factor headline!

The presence of healed bites on her body suggested she had suffered a spate of aggressive incidents with the dog.

Many dog bites showed common features and awareness of these might help people avoid risky situations.

August 08, 2007

Council reviews Dog Control Policy

Council reviews Dog Control Policy

Measures to minimise dog attacks are in place under both the current Dog Control Policy and the proposed new policy which will go before Council in the next couple of months, Animal Control Team Leader Mark Vincent says.

Sunday's incident in which a youngster was badly mauled by a loose dog was a reminder that despite rules, regulations and constant surveillance by dog control officers, sometimes these dreadful attacks still take place.

"The best advice I can give to dog owners is to ensure they are secured - either within a fenced property, or chained. It's also in the best interest of the dog owners and the wider community to keep dogs on a leash when out in public. And dogs should be socialised with other dogs and people in one of several Christchurch dog exercise areas."

The current Christchurch City Council Dog Control Policy reinforces Government legislation around dangerous dogs, which are required to be neutered within a certain time frame and to wear muzzles in public.

There are unlikely to be any changes to these aspects of the policy in the proposed new policy, Mr Vincent says.

The dog involved in Sunday's attack was not on the Council's Dangerous Dogs Register of about 180 dogs that have bitten or attacked a person.

"If you have a breed of dog that has a history of attacking people or other dogs, it would be sensible to take your dog to a dog training club or obedience school. And keep it on a leash when out in public," Mr Vincent says.

"We need as dog owners to take personal responsibility for what happens with our dogs," he says.

The Local Government Act 2002 requires that Council reviews a number of bylaws, including the Dog Control Bylaw, by mid 2008. Before the bylaw can be reviewed, Council has to review the Dog Control Policy, last amended in 2003.

More information on the proposed Dog Control Policy 2007 will be available on the Council website in the bylaws section within the next couple of months.


Dog owners try to cool attack anger

Dog owners are urging authorities not to over-react amid heated calls for action after a Christchurch toddler was mauled.

It's not JUST authorities... it's the public at large.

Have you been listening to Radio Live, or Talk Back (one of the same) yesterday. That's all they talked about.

Doglinks was interviewed on Radio Live yesterday as they wanted to make sense of what happened, and wanted solutions.

Unfortunately, it's not that simple. More rules, more high fences, more short leads, more fines, more dog pound officers, more microchips will NOT stop dog attacks. Some of these measures will increase them.

How short should the lead be? How high should the fence be? Why don't we just put all dogs in cages? Sounds like animal abuse to me.... so does putting a dog behind high fences, and short leads. They need socialisation, they need free walks and RUNS...

The Village Dog concept is that dogs are part of society. Yes they walked freely, but they also socialised freely.

FACTS about this dog attack:
no adult supervision
dog jumped over fence

This dog has a strong prey drive as he jumped the fence, and apparently went straight for the kid. However, this dog could have been wondering for some time, then rush to the sound of shrieks of children's cries. Witnesses??

This dog wasn't socialised properly. Puppy period is the most important time of a dog's life to get to know their environment. Sadly, most dogs learn to bark at the fence, bark at other dogs when walking, and think that the world is against them.

Yes, it IS the dog owners fault. No dog is inherently bad, and dogs are trainable (unlike what peter dunne said yesterday... he's obviously after the sound bit)

Like I said previously in this blog... because the media beat up Staffie-looking- Pit-bull looking dogs as EVIL and DANGEROUS, we the public walk around our streets, and cross the road when we see one of these dogs. Tell me, how will that dog get socialised when people and their dogs cross the road? Will these dogs actually get walks during the day instead of being walked at midnight?

Two-year-old Aotea Coxon was savaged by an American Staffordshire terrier-cross in a Christchurch park on Sunday.

She required several hours of surgery and 290 stitches to treat the facial injuries she suffered, and is in hospital in a stable condition. (...)

She said that on Sunday, Aotea and another child went to Jellie Park by themselves instead of waiting for her to take them. This is in response to the media saying WHERE WAS THE MOTHER?

"They took off on their own. I asked my daughter where they were, she said 'Oh my God, they've gone to the park'."
How far was the park from her house?
She would say that now, but I'm sure that they did this before, and why shouldn't they?? Kids should be allowed to go to the park alone, although a young 2 year old is a bit young to be lead by big sister.

The distraught owners of the dog said it escaped from their fenced back yard. They said the animal had never been aggressive before.

There are ALWAYS signs, they just didn't know how to read their dog's body language.

Police are considering whether to charge the owners.

In the United States, if your dog kills, you can be put to jail as if YOU did the crime! That's a bit harsh, and I'm sorry that we have the attitude that "someone should pay!"

Prime Minister Helen Clark said yesterday she would be looking at ways of improving and extending dog control laws, and at whether the list of banned breeds could be widened.

ya mate, now that's going to solve the problem !!

She had enormous sympathy for dog attack victims. How about all other victims of crime?

"It gives you the creeps to think of dangerous dogs strolling around, ready to pounce on innocent people," she said. "That's why I am more than happy to keep looking at how the law can be improved and how enforcement can be improved."

Why can't politicians ask the experts before they open their mouth ! If I wanted HER opinion, I'd ask. But she isn't an expert. Doglinks has presented to the Select Committee, and nothing of what we offered was looked at.... ie. dog education for the owner would be #1 on the list, the other would be less legislation.

Why? People who's dog may have bitten, or 'rushed at' at someone quickly leaves the scene of the 'crime'.

Why? they are afraid that authorities will take their dog away. It's easier to leave than to settle civilly, to apologies, to pay for 'damage'. If you do, then you 'admit guilt' and in the eyes of the law, you are guilty!

There is also the question of dogs used as protection... protection of property, protection of possession like drugs, money. We need to look at our drug laws too, while we are at it.

A breeder of Staffordshire bull terriers, who did not want to be named, said the breed's name was being sullied by the American Staffordshire terrier breed, which is closely related to the banned pitbull.

And who can tell them apart? How can you band a breed when you don't know what they look like?!

She said nine times out of 10 dogs attacked only if provoked or pushed into a corner.

"You get the odd rogue dog. But you don't see dogs walking up and down the street looking for children to bite."

YES, so we REALLY do NOT know the WHOLE story about this dog attack. People are NOT talking. Well, the mother wasn't at the scene, so we can't ask her? Where are the witnesses?

The New Zealand Kennel Club said there was a lot of confusion about breeds considered dangerous.

Senior vice-president Martin Hewitt said: "Once you start trying to do breed-specific legislation, you open up a whole can of worms, because where do you stop?" yes!

Most dogs that attacked people were not registered, Mr Hewitt said.

Another reason why we should look at how to get dogs registered. Registration fees is WAY too expensive. Hell, they should already be microchipped !

I have on the blog the Marlborough council and other councils, say that 90% of dogs have been re-registered, but what about all those dogs what we DON't KNOW about ??

August 04, 2007

Dog forced to eat dead pals

A starving dog forced to eat its dead companions and a horse with hooves three-and-a-half foot long were among a rising number of abuse cases investigated by the RSPCA, the animal charity said on Wednesday

The RSPCA said its figures for 2006 showed there had been a "shocking catalogue of crimes against animals" but said the new animal rights law was helping to cut the overall number of animals that suffered.

Pet owners became legally liable for the welfare of their animals for the first time under stringent new anti-cruelty laws that came into force this Spring.

"Many front line inspectors are reporting that people are responding well to the new law, and increasingly we are able to prevent animal suffering before it begins," said Jackie Ballard, the RSPC's director general.

Offences against cats and dogs were down by 9.5 and 15.6 per cent respectively, although there was a rise in cruelty cases against horses and ponies.

The annual statistics showed there had been an 10.5 per cent increase in the number of cruelty investigations, a 7.6 per cent rise in the number of animals rescued or collected, and a 9 per cent rise in court orders banning offenders keeping pets. MORE>>

Neglected dog had maggots in its ears

The owner of a dog with maggots infesting its ruptured eardrum has been deemed unfit to own a pet for five years.

The Bucklands Beach man was found guilty of three counts under the Animal Welfare Act of failing to provide sufficient water, treatment and the alleviation of distress to his cocker spaniel.

SPCA inspector Victoria Border arrived at the address in March to find the dog with a ruptured eardrum filled with live maggots.

Ms Border says the ear infection was serious and painful.

The dog also had faeces encrusted in its fur, she says.


Ip was ordered to pay reparation of $2808.83 to the SPCA, $390 in court costs and was disqualified from owning an animal for five years.


How can anyone let their dog become so unhealthy? You own a dog, you have the responsibility to love it, and to care for it. How despicable!

August 02, 2007

High rate of dog registration in Marlborough

Marlborough is good to its dogs according to a survey of dog registrations.
A report from Marlborough District Council compliance officer Joanne Smart to last week's environment committee meeting showed Marlborough had a comparatively high rate of registration.

Research has shown that people are 12 times more likely to be attacked by an unregistered dog and Marlborough's low rate was believed to be a result of the council's zero tolerance to unregistered dogs, and the work of the council's animal control contractor Maata Waaka.
A project looking into unaccounted-for dogs earlier this year found there were 152 dogs unaccounted for. MORE>>

Injured Cane able to retire

Injured police dog Cane has apprehended his last suspect and will spend retirement with his handler with whom he has formed such a formidable team.

Cane's life hung in the balance last week after he was stabbed four times by a car theft suspect deep in the Kaingaroa Forest but survived a rushed trip back to Rotorua with his handler Jason Owen and the emergency vet treatment which followed. MORE>>

Dog owners registering

Nearly 80 per cent of dog owners in the Timaru district have registered their animals, with a month to go before the penalty deadline. MORE>>
web page hit counter