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Farmers Welcome The Dropping of Dog Fencing Proposals

News that the Government has dropped its dog fencing proposals is a victory for Federated Farmers and proof that the Select Committee process can work, says Charlie Pedersen, Vice President Federated Farmers of New Zealand (Inc).

In response to a few horrific dog attacks earlier this year, the Government proposed that all dog owners be required to contain their dog(s) in such a way that any person, day or night, could access at least one door of a dog owner's house without being confronted by a dog.

The Select Committee has decided that all dog owners must ensure their dog cannot freely leave their property but it has suggested retaining the 'unimpeded access' provision only for dogs declared dangerous.

“Analysis Federated Farmers undertook clearly showed that the proposed fencing requirements would impose a huge cost on dog owners. The cost to the average rural resident, with a 500 metre driveway would have been in the order of $60,000 - $90,000. The fencing requirements would be highly unlikely to result in a reduction of dog attacks and could lead to increased burglaries and home invasions.

“However Federated Farmers supports the proposed increases in maximum court imposed penalties for serious injury offences, and for councils to be able to require potentially dangerous dogs to be muzzled.

“The support of responsible dog owners is needed if the Government is to succeed in its aim of reducing dog attacks. The dropping of the fencing requirements is a step in the right direction” concluded Mr Pedersen.

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