A father is too scared to let his family go home after a dog mauled his young daughter – but it’s his neighbours, rather than their dogs that he is worried about.
Five-year-old Ataahua is lucky she didn’t lose an eye when the large pitbull cross attacked her.
She was out playing by the letterbox of the family’s former home, a Housing New Zealand property in Papakura’s Elsie Morton Place, when the dog set upon her earlier this month.
"He ran and jumped and bit me in the eye. I came running back home crying."
Officers have been working in the evenings and at weekends to get dogs off the streets and door-knocking houses where dogs have been seen or registered in the past but there are no records of registration now.
Their focus on the area will continue, he says.
Housing New Zealand south Auckland regional manager Madhavan Raman says staff are very concerned for the family and have met them to discuss the incident and the option of moving to another property.
"Housing New Zealand was unaware there was a dog on the neighbouring property as the tenant was not permitted to have a dog.
Really sad that this lead to the family fleeing their house. This is really not the outcome that anyone wants. It's hard enough for good dogs to get a good wrap, but... I know that in these situations the dog is there for protection of their owner, and their owners' "possessions".