Dog owner barking mad over 'lies' made by complaining neighbours

19:47, May 13 2014

The owner of two dogs which have caused endless sleepless night for her neighbours said complaints laid to the city council were lies and people were blaming her dogs for barking from other properties.

A hearing to decide the fate of two Hardy St dogs was held yesterday, with Danuta Boniface and her daughter Juanita fighting to regain their dogs from the council, who had seized them.

Invercargill City Council animal control team leader Steven Boyd said the council had removed the two dogs, one heavily pregnant on April 8, after persistent complaints and extensive logs of barking about the dogs.

The family pets were living in unsuitable conditions, being tethered and in an unfenced backyard, and causing excessive noise, he said. The problem had caused such an issue in Georgetown that the Wellington St Neighbourhood Support Group had logged issues of barking at the address.

But Boniface said the logs were a pack of lies.

She said some were made up or misreported because her family and her dogs were not present at the house during the some of the periods that the group was complaining about the barking.


The two dogs, a chestnut- coloured female German Shepherd called Rolly and a black female labrador called Guardian Angel were loved, looked after and fed, she said.

The first dog, known as Angel, was a gift to her daughter, who aspired to be a vet.

She would be heartbroken if the dog was not returned to her, Boniface said.

Before the family had got the dogs they had been burgled several times, she argued.

She said her neighbours had set several agencies on her and they were doing anything to get rid of her dogs.

"Since we got the dogs they have been like a dog with a bone."

But Boyd said the council had worked with the family, police and SPCA to ensure the best possible outcome, but the situation had never improved.

The council had offered solutions, support and suggestions to the family, which they had not taken up, he said.

The council was simply working under the Dog Control Act when they removed the dogs and they had been thanked by several different neighbours for removing the dogs.

Invercargill City Council environmental planning services director Pamela Gare said a decision on the future of the dogs would be released within a fortnight.

The Southland Times