Pack of roaming dogs terrorising Auckland neighbourhood

Resident Carolyn Symonds says she is neurotic for the safety of her two cats Maggie and Cato.
JAMES PASLEY/FAIRFAX NZ

Resident Carolyn Symonds says she is neurotic for the safety of her two cats Maggie and Cato.

A pack of roaming dogs being blamed for a cat killing spree has an Auckland suburb on edge.

Hillsborough residents are terrified after a string of recent night time dog attacks have resulted in the deaths of at least five pets.

Auckland Council said it was investigating the attacks. It received three complaints about attacks on cats and 14 complaints about roaming dogs in the central Auckland suburb.

Animal management officer Lennie Vickery prepares a dog trap using meat as a bait.
SUPPLIED

Animal management officer Lennie Vickery prepares a dog trap using meat as a bait.

Auckland Council central-east animal management team leader Christo van der Merwe said the pack of dogs might have been attracted to area by the smell of a female dog in heat.

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Six dogs from the suburb have recently been impounded, the lastest on June 14, but none could be linked to the attacks. 

Hillsborough residents are on high alert after a plague of dog attacks at night have left the suburb with at least five ...
JAMES PASLEY/FAIRFAX NZ

Hillsborough residents are on high alert after a plague of dog attacks at night have left the suburb with at least five dead pets.

He said officers were placing meat-baited dog traps in strategic locations to catch loose dogs, without harming them. 

Hillsborough resident Roseanne Gibson lost her 9-year-old cat Mewsli to a dog attack.

"They're dangerous, they're hunting," Gibson said.

Hillsborough resident Roseanne Gibson lost her 9-year-old cat Mewsli to a dog attack.
SUPPLIED

Hillsborough resident Roseanne Gibson lost her 9-year-old cat Mewsli to a dog attack.

On June 1 she woke at midnight to find Mewsli in the jaws of a tanned dog out on her deck. Despite Gibson scaring the dog off, Mewsli died from his injuries. 

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The following night Gibson said her neighbour watched two dogs rip his cat apart. 

"There are so many cats in this area that have been lost," Gibson said. 

Hillsborough resident Janine Kolkman said she had lost one rabbit and two guinea pigs to dog attacks.

Hillsborough resident David Claridge said the attacks had been ongoing for about a month and he was aware of at least six pets being killed.

"Everybody's stressed to max, we haven't slept all week," he said. 

Claridge said he was locking his two cats inside at night rather than running the risk of losing them to an attack. He said he wouldn't be letting them out for another month. 

Resident Carolyn Symonds said she was neurotic for the safety of her two cats Maggie and Cato.

"It's all too close to home for my comfort," she said. 

Council received multiple descriptions of dogs that may have been involved in the attacks, and have undertaken patrols of the area to try to locate the dogs.

Van der Merwe said a number of the dogs could have roamed a long distance from their homes, possibly from outside Hillsborough. 

Van der Merwe encouraged people to report any sightings of roaming dogs to 09 301 0101 and, if possible, to take photos of the dogs. 

 - Stuff

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