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.

April 29, 2011

Most dog attacks hushed up

The public is being kept in the dark about the real scale of dog attacks in New Zealand, says Tauranga dog-control expert John Payne.

That's the problem, so the solution is our International Dog Bite Prevention Week !! 

Mr Payne, the city council's environmental compliance manager, told the Bay of Plenty Times that official statistics did not reflect the true picture, largely because dog owners were not reporting dog bites that they or their families sustained.

Why? the fear that their dog will be put down. The more aggressive the law, the more you frighten people, and the more that they go 'into hiding'.

Interviewed after he presented his monthly report to council yesterday, Mr Payne estimated that 75 per cent of dog bites were not being reported - and local authority statistics were what drove government legislation.

Information he obtained from ACC showed that claims for 270 "dog bite-related incidents" were lodged with ACC in Tauranga in 2009. This contrasted with the 61 biting dogs reported to the council, some of which would have been represented in the ACC's claims.

What is needed is a better way of assessing dog bites... I vote for Dr. Ian Dunbar's scale.

The trend was repeated last year, with 303 dog-bite claims lodged with the ACC, compared with 67 biting incidents reported to the council. And even the ACC's figures did not represent the true scale of the problem: "You could double that because not all dog bites needed treatment."

And 10,000 claims last year... according to the NZ Herald
Interesting how the statistics are being thrown around.

The difference between ACC and council statistics was mostly explained by a family's loyalty to its dog - even when it bit family members, he said. OF COURSE !! Would you condemn your child to a life of death!

Mr Payne said the ACC was not required to notify councils about dog bite claims, so they didn't find their way into official statistics. Who would have known that government offices don't talk to each other!

He told the council yesterday that microchipping of dogs was making owners more accountable.
Whereas 38 per cent of dogs nationally were now microchipped, 44 per cent of biting dogs were found to be chipped.  That isn't actually very high, is it?? 44% of 38% is a very small number!

Problem dogs were often a reflection of problem owners and chipping identified those people, Mr Payne said.-- "those small number of people"

He also noted an alarming trend with pit bull terriers. Pit bulls comprised 1.4 per cent of the country's registered dogs, but were responsible for 18 per cent of bites.  Hum... statistics, statistics, and more lies
What is now classifieD as a pitbull?
Are we talking about breed-specific legislation?!?


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