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Attn Dog Owners: Kids & Dogs Dangerous Summer Mix

Office of Hon Nanaia Mahuta
Parliament Buildings

Kids And Dogs Dangerous Summer Mix

Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta is today urging dog owners to take extra care during the festive season, especially when dogs are around children and young people.

Nanaia Mahuta said it was important to note the four key principles to dog safety this summer.

"Responsible dog ownership is most important during the summer. This is the time of the year when kids and dogs are more likely to meet up in parks, on beaches or around backyards," says Nanaia Mahuta

"I urge dog owners to take extra precautions when they have visitors, especially when those visitors are children that your dog is not used to.

"Take extra care when you are out walking your dog as there are more people around and it's easy for a dog to get distracted by summer activities. If your dog is classified as menacing, keep it muzzled. If you are unsure how your dog will react around kids, keep it muzzled," says Nanaia Mahuta.

"Be safe - it's important for you, your dog and the people you meet, especially children."

Nanaia Mahuta said the other three principles to dog safety are good law, effective enforcement and community support. She said new legislation about dog deeds and dog breed has already been introduced to Parliament.
"This government is committed to maintaining a balance between people enjoying the benefits of responsible dog ownership and people being safe from dogs.

The proposed laws mean that dogs classified as menacing must be neutered if they are of the listed breed or type (currently, American Pit Bull Terrier, Dogo Argentino, Brazilian Fila and Japanese Tosa). It will also mean that a Council can require any other dog classified as menacing to be neutered if they think that dog poses a threat to people, stock or animals.

"Under the proposed new law if a dog is classified as menacing, the owner of the dog must not allow it to be at large or in any public place or in any private way without being muzzled in a manner that prevents the dog from biting but allows it to breathe and drink without obstruction," said Ms Mahuta.


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