Increase Reported In Kaipara Dog Attacks
The number of dog attacks in Kaipara has increased from 39 to 69 over the last year, according to Kaipara District Council’s newly released Annual Animal Management Report 2022-2023.
The council report tracks animal management activities over the last year and is a requirement under the Dog control Act 1996.
Hayley Worthington, General Manager for Customer Experience says the Council takes any dog attack seriously.
"The highest priorities for the team is to keep Kaipara residents and visitors to the district safe from harm caused by dogs,” says Hayley.
Hayley says the council has focussed on decreasing the number of unregistered dogs in the district.
“Around 40% of dogs that carry out attacks are unregistered and poorly managed.”
The 2022-2023 year saw 110 more dogs registered in Kaipara than in the previous year.
Hayley believes some of this may be attributed to the increasing number of dogs adopted during the COVID pandemic, and the work the Animal Management Team has been emailing, phoning, door knocking, patrolling and following up on complaints to encourage people to register their dogs. The council has also more than doubled the number of beach controls carried out over the last year to educate people in what it means to be a responsible dog owner.
The number of infringement notices issued to dog owners has increased over the last year with almost twice as many issued to people who haven’t registered their dogs than in the previous year.
Of note is the increased number of complaints for wandering dogs, which has more than doubled over the last year. The team attributes this, and the complaints about dog barking to owners returning to work following the COVID confinement.
“It’s good that people are reporting wandering dogs. If they can identify the dog, take a photo, or know where it comes from, we can have a conversation with the owner.”
The Council is asking people to remember to close their gates to keep their dog contained. When in public, dogs are required to be under control at all times.
The council provides areas where people can exercise their dogs off lead. In other areas people should have their dogs on lead and under control to prevent incidents.
“Some people are afraid of being approached by a dog, even if the dog is an old softie. Dog owners need to respect that.”
“Another tip is to respect other dogs. Not all dogs are overly keen or eager to meet you or your pet. Please if you see another dog approaching, try and give it space or ask the owner if its ok to approach.”
A total of 34 dogs were impounded through the year. Of these 17 were returned to owners, 9 were euthanised and 6 were rehomed.
View the presentation at the Council Meeting on theKaipara District Council YouTube channel(3:50 minutes in).
The Kaipara District Council Annual Management Report 2022-2023 and statistics are available online.