ZB

About 25 dogs at the property where man mauled to death

Author
NZ Herald ,
Publish Date
Fri, 5 Aug 2022, 1:46pm
Pukekawa Rd, at Panguru, in Northern Hokianga, where a man is believed to have been mauled to death by some of his 25 dogs, is little more than a 'goat track.'
Pukekawa Rd, at Panguru, in Northern Hokianga, where a man is believed to have been mauled to death by some of his 25 dogs, is little more than a 'goat track.'

About 25 dogs at the property where man mauled to death

Author
NZ Herald ,
Publish Date
Fri, 5 Aug 2022, 1:46pm

A rural Northland community is in shock and disbelief following the death of a man who was mauled by a pack of dogs.

The Far North District Council confirmed about 25 dogs were on the Panguru, North Hokianga, property, however, some of these were puppies.

"A history check on the property by Council's Animal Management Team found that there were no active registered dogs for the property; people are allowed to have more than 2 dogs," council general manager of district services Dean Myburgh said.

The council does not have any animal control officers in Panguru today, he said.

A number of marked and unmarked police cars and vans, and several other vehicles can be seen at the house on Puketawa Rd in Panguru at present.

A 69-year-old man was attacked at this property about 2pm yesterday and police shot dead one dog during attempts to control four dogs.

Police said four dogs got loose and behaved aggressively when officers were at the property.

Three other dogs that escaped the property when the man died are still on the loose.

Kaikohe-Hokianga ward councillor Moko Tepania told Radio NZ's Morning Report the situation was "scary".

"This is something out of a horror story to be honest, that we've had someone who's been mauled to death by dogs."

He estimated there to be about 5,000 dogs in the district and said stray dogs were an issue, though nothing like this had happened before.

"This is extremely horrific and I really do feel so much aroha for Runaruna, which is a community just out of Panguru.

"This is just something you'd never want to happen in your area."

Puketawa Road was a 10km-long metal road "just a little bit of an upgrade from a goat track".

Tepania wasn't surprised the dogs had gone missing as the area was "as rural as you can get".

"It is a well used road but it is extremely rural, it's surrounded by bush and mountains and rivers. So if these dogs had gone to ground then until they come back it could be a real struggle to try and locate them."

Everyone in the area had either pet dogs or hunting dogs, Tepania said.

"I'm wondering if these are hunting dogs that have been mistreated or left hungry ... or if they're feral dogs.

"If they're feral dogs, dogs that nobody actually owns that are just roaming around up there then we do need to get onto this to make sure there aren't other packs of dogs like this."

Police are today turning away people from the driveway to the house where the tragedy happened, about 1km up Puketawa Rd.

The house is about 3km from Panguru.

Police Far North area investigations manager Detective Senior Sergeant Mark Dalzell enquiries into the incident remained ongoing.

"At this stage, police are still working to establish the wider circumstances of the incident and a scene guard remains in place at the address on Puketawa Road, Panguru.

"A search for the outstanding three dogs has resumed in the area this morning."

He reiterated earlier advice for the public to avoid any stray dogs in the area and anyone with information on the location of the dogs should ring 111.

"As this was a fast-moving situation, police don't have a description of the animals to provide at this stage, however will look to issue a further update when more information is available.

"We understand this is a tragic and concerning situation for the community and police are providing support to the families of those involved," Dalzell said.

A Far North District Council spokesman said council animal control officers were working with police where possible.

The council would release further information when available.

Police responded to a sudden death at a house on Puketawa Road yesterday afternoon and initial indications suggested a man found dead was subjected to a dog attack.

Police enquiries are in the early stages but they don't believe his death is suspicious.