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Dog fines set by Government


MEDIA RELEASE

23 April 2004

Dog fines set by Government

The principal law for the management of dogs in New Zealand is contained in the Dog Control Act 1996 (‘the Act’).

The Act contains obligations that require all owners to register their dogs, ensure they are kept under control, and ensure they do not cause a nuisance to any person, cause damage to property, or injure, endanger or cause distress to any person, stock, poultry or domestic animal or protected wildlife.

Mr Geoff Atherfold, team leader of compliance monitoring, Auckland City Environments says, “In situations where dog owners are breaking the law, we are obligated to act. The fines that are given out for breaches of the law are not set by council but by the legislation. No group of people or particular area is being targeted and there is one law that applies to all dog owners.

“The overall objective of the council in regard to dogs is to encourage responsible dog ownership and community awareness which will promote an environment where dogs and people can happily co-exist.”

The Act enables council to require dog owners to meet their obligations and to address situations where those obligations are not met.

Councils are given powers of enforcement under the Act which they are required to use to the extent necessary to ensure public safety and comfort and to penalise and deter irresponsible dog ownership.

Data on the number of infringements for this year to date, broken down into regions show that Westmere had 29, Tamaki-Maungakeikie 179, Avondale-Roskill 163, Eden Albert 55, Hobson 17 and Gulf Islands 6.

Auckland City has recently increased the number of designated dog exercise areas from 81 to 128 after completing a review of the city’s dog exercise areas.

Ends

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