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A big “Thumbs Up NZ” for the lack of imagination & foresight and daring to be different. The new proposed dog control laws, leave a lot to be desired.

A big “Thumbs Up NZ” for the lack of imagination & foresight and daring to be different. The new proposed dog control laws, leave a lot to be desired.

This will probably be, my first and last article I write on this subject because quite honestly, its enough to make a person pull their hair out, in frustration and disgust.

I am not going to get caught up in the fray and ramble on emotively, there are plenty of people out there, who without a doubt, are more qualified at emotive and unproductive rambling, than I.

The number of dog attacks/ bites have been slowly increasing over a number of years, there are many reasons for that, the theme however always seems to remain the same.

NZ has a spate of reported dog attacks/bites.  Reports in the media usually lead to a feeding frenzy of emotive rants, raves & ideas on how to solve the “dangerous dog problem”. This theme seems to be repeated every time a serious attack story hits the media.

Common sense facts and solutions, are what is needed, not emotive rants and raves. I have been an advocate of dog safety education for all (children & adults) for a very long time and I have to say, “Lets get real, is the dog really to blame?”

When I refer to dog safety,  I mean teaching both children and adults,  how to act, behave and stay safe, when in the company of dogs, it’s about teaching and keeping both dogs and people safe. 77% of dog bites come from the family dog or a friends dog. stopthe77.com

Personally, I have found that most dog bites & attacks are caused by inappropriate interactions with a dog. There’s a real culture of “she’ll be right”, or “oh Fluffy wouldn’t bite – he’s bomb proof”. People are complacent and usually not aware of the warning signs.

Indeed in a recent online survey commissioned by Hon Louise Upston  (associate minister of local government) which ran from 1st August 2016 – until 14th August 2016. The need for more education was indeed one of the things identified, yet it seems one of the last things on the “to do” list.

Yet, Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) is often mentioned.  For those of you who don’t know what BSL is, it’s laws or legislation based on the breed your dog is, or in some cases what people think your dog is if you’re not sure. Unfortunately, it’s pretty much a quick fix solution that worldwide, is known not to work! However, it has the potential to cost a lot of dogs their lives. So why look at adopting it? Is it to placate the uneducated & uninformed, while trying to curry favour, with the general public?

 Why not, dare to be different, how hard can it be, to research and maybe try something new.

For example take a look at: How Calgary reduced dog attacks without banning pit bulls  Briefly, they changed from the “standard animal control model” to a “responsible pet owner model” education is a big thing, all schools are visited every year, dog owners are urged to get training for their dog if problems arise and so on. Read the article, it is food for thought.

In a recent article published on Radio NZ web site 23rd September 2016 an article titled:

Dog law change would make dangerous breeds extinct in NZ :

Mr Les Dalton (Institute of Animal Management president) said the new measures were well overdue.

“It’s something that needed to be done. We’ve had far too many children being mauled by pit bull-type dogs and dogs that had the content of the wrong breed in them. Would you put your grandchild or little daughter or little son in the lounge with a pitbull and leave them alone with the child?”  A very emotive statement, to say the least.

Maybe, Mr Dalton needs to be taught some basic dog safety education. You should never leave any dog, irrespective of the breed, alone with a child or even some adults for that matter. (dog safety 101, folks!)

All dogs can bite, even “GOOD WELL TRAINED DOGS” if they are teased, hit, abused or put in situations THEY find uncomfortable. People need to be taught how to act and behave when in the company of dogs. “All animals speak to us, including dogs, if we as humans, choose to watch, listen and learn”. Dogs need us to protect & respect them.

Having a well trained dog isn’t enough, basic dog safety/dog bite prevention, should be taught in all schools, while I know in some areas of NZ, it is being done. I am also aware  “Funding” is an issue. If NZ wants to turn the tide and is serious about reducing the dog bite statistics, make the funding available.

The old saying, “talk is cheap, put your money where your mouth is, or shut the bleep up” springs to mind.

Now, this suggestion may or may not be popular and yes it will not reach everyone but its a proactive start.

How about anyone involved with dogs.  All dog trainers, vets, pet shops and behaviourists  hand out information and discuss basic dog safety and the dog control act with their clients? It’s easy enough to make up FAQ sheets or even print something off the internet and hand them out. I’d also be interested to hear from any trainer, club, vet who is doing this, apart from myself.

 Also, rescues, SPCA, Plunket and the like, are on the front lines so to speak. It’s a great opportunity to educate your clients and help turn the tide.

Even “GOOD HUMANS” will react if they’re pushed, teased or threatened – so why do we put our pets in potentially life threatening situations?

 

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on October 18, 2016 in About

 

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Pet Support Group, for owners with challenging pets: Nurturing and caring for a pet with problems

 

Do you find, you are living your life around your pet? Often, owning, loving and caring for a pet with problems can be challenging. Sometimes you may feel frustrated, isolated and you may begin to doubt, your own pet ownership abilities and instincts and often ask yourself, “am I doing the right thing”?

The Pet Support group welcomes all people who struggle with the challenge of living with and caring for their difficult pet. This group is dedicated to supporting you in managing and honoring your bond, no matter how delicate or difficult. We aim to achieve this by providing a supportive social network to help reduce isolation and stress and by encouraging you to mind fully notice and cherish the positive aspects in your relationship with your pet.

While I strongly believe that training is a great way to further explore your relationship with your dog, our group focuses on the emotions involved with your relationship and does not include training advice.

I will facilitate monthly meetings that will incorporate member-to-member communication and support in a safe and open environment. Group attendees are invited to relate their own challenging, personal struggles while vowing to offer a non judgmental, empathetic ear and coping strategies when requested by peers.

What better group of people to connect with than those who walk in the same shoes?

The advantages of attending this support group are limitless. Some of the best reasons to join include:

  • Sharing common experiences and exploring problems
  • Learning new coping strategies and healthy emotional outlets for frustrations
  • Forming new friendships and discovering a sense of community
  • Learning to thrive in spite of your pet’s issues
  • Being surrounded by a love based approach to repair and nurture your bond 

 

Meetings, First Sunday of every month

Where: Wetlands Café, Ashhurst Domain, Ashhurst

Next Meeting:

Sunday 3rd May from 3. 30 – 4.30

Please fill out the form below, to reserve your seat, or if you would like further information

 *Pet photos are welcome but please leave your furry family home.*

I would like to thank Rachel Bow, Ruff Mutts Portland, Oregon, USA, for her assistance and advice on setting up this Support Group.

Gold coin donation, proceeds to go HAVEN Bull Breed Rescue & Education

 
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Posted by on April 13, 2015 in About

 

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Do you like Fantasy Adventure Books? Derin Attwood author of the exciting Token Bears series is launching book three, join us at the launch of Derin’s new book The Trail to Churnyg.

Book Launch Saturday 6th November @ 2pm

At Wetlands Café Ashhurst Domain, Ashhurst  Local Dog Friendly Cafe

Do you like Fantasy Adventure Books?

Derin Attwood author of the exciting Token Bears series is launching book three, join us at the launch of Derin’s new book The Trail to Churnyg.

Fans of epic journeys and high adventure of the likes of classics such as the The Hobbit and the Percy Jackson series will love The Trail to Churnyg.

She will read excerpts, sign books and answer questions. The Caves of Kirym and The Fortress of Faltryn, books one and two will also be available.

Entry is free and there will be spot prizes.

If you are a budding author or have written a book and would like to publish Derin will be giving a talk on The Science of Books after the launch.

Click on the link below to find out more:

https://www.facebook.com/events/531464366956489/

 
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Posted by on December 1, 2014 in About

 

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