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.

December 30, 2007

The boy who gave his life for a dog

Ashley Atofu Patai-Vaisigano was a good boy who was never afraid to do the right thing. In the end it cost him his life.

The dog's in heaven will take care of him...

The handsome, 15-year-old Hawke's Bay junior rep basketballer was spending a rare week away from his Napier family, working in Taupo with a friend, when he drowned in the Waikato River while trying to save a dog he thought was in distress. MORE>>

December 29, 2007

Jail emaciated dog's owners, says SPCA

The owners of a dog left to starve while they holidayed in Rotorua should be jailed, the SPCA says. I agree!

"This is about as bad as it gets," SPCA general manager David Lloyd-Barker said.

"She was about a day away from being dead."

Rescued on Christmas Eve after a tip-off from neighbours, the mixed breed dog dubbed "Eve" weighed just 10-kilograms.

Mr Lloyd-Barker said Eve had been abandoned by her owners for at least a week but estimated she had not been feed for up to four weeks. MORE>>

December 28, 2007

Animals putting their bodies on the line

One man's best friend put his paw up for national hero this year.

George the 9-year-old Jack Russell made headlines around the world in April after he gave his life to save a group of children from two pitbulls.

The pitbulls had rushed at five youngsters walking in the Taranaki town of Manaia.


And in October, a bronze statue was unveiled in the Manaia town centre in memory of the brave little pooch.

Another canine who made the ultimate sacrifice this year was police dog Enzo, a German shepherd who drowned during the pursuit of an offender in the Bay of Plenty in August.


Training turns puppies into guides

Being treated like a normal person is all that Nadia Clark wants.

The 25-year-old has retinitis pigmentosa, a condition that results in a slow loss of central vision.

The Glen Innes resident feels there is a lack of understanding about blind people, so much so that going out alone made her

Walking into people, poles, signs, cafe tables and chairs added to her frustration.


December 25, 2007

Man's best friend steps up to the job in 2007

It was a year when our canine pals showed their mettle, and some of the nation's quietest workers helped keep the economy afloat. A German polar bear became a household name but he didn't hold a candle to George the Jack Russell terrier.

One man's best friend put his paw up for national hero this year - George, the nine-year-old Jack Russell who in April made headlines around the world after he gave his life to save a group of children from two pitbulls.

The pitbulls had rushed at five children walking in the Taranaki town of Manaia.

Plucky little George started barking and charged at the pitbulls, allowing the children to run away.

The pitbulls fell upon the tiny terrier, savaging him until a passing motorist managed to separate the dogs.

George was later put down because of his injuries. MORE>>

December 22, 2007

Trials of Job have a happy ending

A year on from an ordeal that almost killed him, Job the dog has made an amazing return to full health.

In November last year, the SPCA found Job locked in a house which the tenant had left a week earlier. He was covered in weeping and bleeding sores, his eyes were closed with pus, and mange had left him with no hair on his body.

Now living with long-term foster parents in Tauranga, Job is in "ridiculously good health", said SPCA general manager David Lloyd-Barker.

"He is incredibly spoilt, with acres of paddock to run around in." MORE>>

December 21, 2007

Top ten pampered pooch gifts

As people's obsession with their pets reaches an all-time high, so has the list of holiday gifts available for pampered pooches who are treated as family rather than just animals.

1. Perfume for Pooches

2. The Pedigree Tree

3. Doggies photo treats

4. Coffee for dog

5. All terrain dog stroller

6. Louis XV dog house

7. Juicy Crittoure "Polished Paws" Nail Polish

8. Pet Armoire

9. Edible greetings cards

10. Paw Made Labels

December 20, 2007

Greedy parrot suffers a death by chocolate

One kea's binge session on dark chocolate proved deadly, leading international journal New Scientist has reported.

The kea was found dead outside a hotel kitchen in Mt Cook village. It had eaten more than 20 grams of dark chocolate, presumably stolen from a rubbish bin.


Just 240 grams of dark chocolate could kill a German shepherd-sized dog.


Police dog Enzo's killer convicted

Police dog Enzo's killer has been convicted, to the delight of the dog's former handler and his family. (...)

Enzo died on August 9 when police went to a Bay of Plenty property looking for Murphy who was wanted for family violence offences.

Murphy was tracked by Enzo and his handler Constable Kayne Cording for a considerable distance before Enzo was released when they were close to Murphy.

"However, Enzo – who caught him –- was drowned by Murphy before Constable Cording could intervene," Western Bay of Plenty area commander Inspector Mike Clement said yesterday.

Murphy maintained he had punched Enzo in self defence but this explanation was not accepted at the time or by the court, Mr Clement said. MORE>>

December 19, 2007

No ruff stuff at doggy daycare

The ultimate in pooch pampering has been unleashed on Auckland - kindergarten-style doggy daycares that offer canines everything from paw painting to sit-down story times. MORE>>

Crimebusting dogs show patient side

You might think Blade has a better idea than most dogs what it is like for the sick children at Wellington Hospital.

Recovering from cancer himself, the retired police dog and his colleagues Asco and Utah, the national police dog champion, paid a visit to the children yesterday.

Six-year-old Kenneth Nielsen, who is being treated for cancer, had a huge smile as Blade padded into his bedroom.

Kenneth has been travelling to Wellington Hospital from his home in Feilding for the past year. MORE>>

December 12, 2007

Dog abuse act of ignorance

A man convicted of not providing proper care for his dog acted out of ignorance, says a judge.

The SPCA removed an emaciated staffordshire bull terrier cross from the Mt Roskill man’s home in March.

He pleaded guilty to a charge of failing to provide veterinary care for the dog. MORE>>

There has been a 38 percent increase in the number of dog attacks reported to the Southland District Council's animal control unit, the council's dog control annual report says.

For the year ended June 30, 2007, the animal control unit responded to 239 complaints, which included attacks, aggressive behaviour, barking, fouling, wandering and dogs that were "contained" by members of the public. Forty dog attacks were reported -- an increase of 15 on the previous year.

So... is all this cost effective?? These are just numbers. They are meaningless. Who's the one doing the tallying, and seeing how much it cost to keep a dog in our society? Then subtract the cost of reduce health care intervention (as it's been proven that dogs reduce stress, give exercise to owners, etc), and then give us a sum figure.

Council regulatory services group manager Lindsay McKenzie said the increase was a result of raised awareness of dangerous dogs through various council initiatives and also through media coverage of high-profile court cases involving dog attacks.

Fines for breaching the Dog Control Act ranged from $100 to $750, Mr McKenzie said.

In addition, the report says animal control impounded 125 dogs -- up 30 (24 percent) on the previous year's figure of 95.

It also issued 125 infringement notices, which was up from 95 on the previous years.

December 06, 2007

Dog survives horror crash

Crash survivor Colin Reeves thought his best mate Schnell the dog was a goner after a hit and run driver rammed them off the northwestern motorway.

The painter was driving to work on November 23 when the impact of the crash caused his station wagon to roll four times and land in a ditch.

Witnesses at the scene called emergency services and were amazed to see the father of three emerge from the wreckage with a sore shoulder and a scratch on the head.

Mr Reeves dusted himself off and noticed his dog was gone.

"All the windows in the car were closed except for one," he says. "He must’ve come out when the car was rolling."

Mr Reeves went with a friend to look for his beloved pet after being cleared by paramedics at the scene.

He was amazed to find the dog – uninjured – about one kilometre away sitting on a driveway in Massey. MORE>>

December 05, 2007


Nifty the dog shows how its done at the Championship Dog agility show held by the Feilding dog training club at Timona Park. Dog handler Deb Johnson, of the Tauranga training club, was competing with Nifty, a 5-year-old bitch heading dog, in the intermediate agility competition.

Christmas tune music to dogs' ears

It's music to the ears of dogs and the creators say it's a sure hit - but to those who are not canines, this Christmas hit is closer to The Sound of Silence.

Believed to be a world first, A Very Silent Night, by The Underdogs, was recorded as an SPCA fundraiser at the highest frequency possible on CD, so only dogs can hear it.

Lwindi Ellis, a spokeswoman for DraftFCB who thought of the idea, said: "Humans may be able to hear a few high-pitched noises - but it's not designed for us." MORE>>

Manukau poodle takes $340 walk

Dog owners should ensure their phone number is on their pet’s collar, says a concerned resident.

Sandra Tudman was upset the owners of a poodle she found wandering through her neighbourhood had to pay $340 to Manukau City Council for the return of their pet.

hey it's cheaper in Christchurch... it's ONLY $300 !!

"I think it’s appalling that such a large sum must be paid, particularly as the
little dog had a correct registration tag," says the Dannemora resident.

I totally agree. Why the hell do we pay registration fees... it's to safely return our dogs apart from all the other issues that don't concern good dog owners.

"One wonders exactly what owners pay the dog registration fee for, as even the AA give two free callouts to members per year," she says.

What a great comparison !! perhaps the dog pound should get a bit of competition.

It surely creates bad will amongst dog owners, that's 4 sure!

Mrs Tudman says she understands there is a cost involved in running the very necessary dog pound and dog control service.

But she questions why such a large sum must be paid by owners who have correctly tagged their pets.

"I personally felt awful being a party to the owner having to pay such a large sum to retrieve their beloved pet, and I apologise to them for that," she says.

When she asked the warden why such a large fee was necessary, she was told correct council procedures had to be followed and staff wages had to be paid from somewhere.

Mrs Tudman found the nine-year-old poodle wandering along Moyrus Cres. Concerned for his safety she took him to her home nearby and rang the council, quoting the ID number on the dog’s tag and requesting they contact the owner so they could collect their pet from her.

She was surprised when during a further call to the council she was told a ranger was on the way to take the dog to the pound.

I ALWAYS LEAVE WANDERING DOGS WANDER... BECAUSE OF THIS!! and I know that dogs will find their way back home. (or at least, most of them)

"I would have laid down in front of the truck to prevent the little fellow from suffering the stress of being taken to the pound," she says.

When the ranger arrived more than five hours after the first call, the owner was contacted and the poodle was taken directly home.

The $340 amount payable to the council comprised a $40 impounding fee for a first offence and a $300 infringement notice which is payable within 14 days.

The dog registration fee is $120 a year. Ya gotta wonder why NO ONE raised this ISSUE during our city's mayoral race...apart from DOGLINKS!

Manukau City Council communications adviser Sharleen Pihema says the fines and fees charged in relation to impounded dogs are nationally imposed and the council has no power to enforce different amounts.

"Stray dogs are the number one dog complaint in the city each year, and the registration fee does not cover the cost of management services for them," she says. Bullshit!

"It wouldn’t be fair for other ratepayers to have to cover the cost of this service. Well we cover the health service for stray teenagers in hospitals!

"The dog owner should have to pay, and the $300 fine sends a strong message to owners to ensure that they contain their dog on their property and to control it when in public."

Send THAT message ... what an awful way of managing dogs, dog owners, people... ya think we're dumb!

I had an email from a concerned UK person who said that they heard that New Zealand was a non-dog-friendly place, and wanted to know if it were true. They didn't know if they should immigrate.

What do you think I told them?

December 03, 2007

Year-long wait for dog attack to reach court

An elderly Paraparaumu man, attacked by a dog a year ago, is relieved the dog's owner has finally appeared in court after an "unbearably long" wait.

Robyn Ward got off his bicycle in a cul- de-sac on December 6 last year to look at a house under construction when an aggressive-looking dog appeared from underneath a nearby parked car.

He hopped back on his bike to cycle away when the dog, a blue heeler called Cowboy, lunged at him, putting a 15-centimetre gash in his lower left leg.

"I looked down and saw the flap of skin hanging over my boot and blood pouring down," Mr Ward said.

A man on the roof, who he believed to be the owner, yelled out: "It was your own bloody fault – you shouldn't have been on the building site."


The next day Mr Ward reported the attack to Kapiti Coast District Council. Ten days later, his GP said the gash had become infected and he was sent to Hutt Hospital for a skin graft. He spent Christmas and New Year waiting for the operation.


December 02, 2007

Dog trials `a disease'

BILL Reader glances up at his wife Joy.

"We've been together 55 years. I met her at the dog trials, best trophy I ever won."At 81, Mr Reader is one of the oldest Taranaki dog trialists still competing.He's had almost 70 years of experience, starting when he was just 13.

And true to form he had three dogs running at Stratford's A&P Association Show on Saturday.
"Dogs are my life," he said, as Jacko, Boss and Thyme nestled into the shade.

Their coats are shiny black and white.

"My dogs get special treatment. I feed them marmite with their food and vitamin powder," he said.


Council scores court win over lockout of dog officers

The Employment Court has found Christchurch City Council did not act unlawfully when it locked out dog control officers last year.

A council spokeswoman said a court decision issued yesterday rejected the Southern Local Government Officers' Union case that the lockout was unlawful because it related to a portion of the employee's duties only, with an equivalent reduction in pay.

The employees were partially locked out after refusing to attend callouts in Banks Peninsula to support their claim for a 50 per cent rise in standby rates.

The spokeswoman said the court rejected the argument that the council acted had unlawfully.

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