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Christchurch’s menacing dog breeds to be neutered

27 February 2004

Christchurch owners of American Pit Bull Terriers and Dogo Argentino dogs will be visited in the next few weeks to be informed that their dogs are now classified as menacing and need to be neutered.

Christchurch City Council Animal Control Team leader, Mark Vincent said,  members of his team will visit the dog owners to discuss the new classification recently introduced by central government and the Council requirement that they be neutered.  The breeds and types of dogs that the Council is now required by law to classify as menacing are Dogo Argentino, Japanese Tosa, Brazilian Fila and American Pit Bull Terrier.

“There are currently three dogs registered as Dogo Argentino and 265 registered as American Pit Bull Terriers and American Pit Bull Terrier Crosses in Christchurch,” Mr Vincent said.

The Animal Control Team will inspect the American Pit Bull Cross dogs to determine their predominant breed and whether they should be classified as menacing.

At its meeting today the Christchurch City Council decided to use its new powers under the Dog Control Amendment Act 2003 to require that all dogs classified as menacing by breed be neutered.  The Council can also require that dogs classified as menacing because of bad behaviour be neutered.

Mr Vincent said that  there are thought to be about 190 registered menacing dogs in Christchurch that have not yet been neutered.

Aside from being neutered, dogs that are classified as menacing must be muzzled at all times in public and from 1 June 2006 wear a microchip.  Anyone in possession of a menacing dog must be advised of the dog’s classification.

For further information about the new menacing dog classification, dog owners can call 941 7041.

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