SPCA seeks information on death of dog near Whakatāne

The SPCA is seeking information on the death of a white bull dog that was left hanging at Onepu Mountain Bike Park in Whakatāne.
Photo: Google Maps

Disclaimer: This story deals with graphic details of animal cruelty.

The SPCA is seeking information about the death of a dog left hanging from a tree near Whakatāne.

On August 21, the animal welfare charity was notified of a young adult white bull dog at Onepu Mountain Bike Park.

After speaking to the medical examiner, Inspector Liisa Jones said the dog was alive when she was hanged and would have died slowly as dogs have a secondary blood supply to the brain.

“Studies have shown that dogs can take between 12 and 20 minutes to die from a hanging that prolongs their distress.

“It appears in this case, from the report, that this dog could have taken up to 30 minutes to die from the way she was hung from the tree.”

The dog also had extensive bruising on its inner lower abdomen, Jones said.

Two members of the mountain biking community found the dog, she said.

The park is very busy with around 24,000 users a year, including dog walkers, runners and mountain bikers.

“It’s quite disturbing because it looks like someone had to think about how he did this and what tools he needed to do the job.

“To do it in such a public place, it’s frequented by many people on a daily basis, so I don’t know what the person’s thought process was about it.”

However, Jones said the abuse was not something she saw often.

The dog was unregistered and the SPCA is now appealing to the public for witnesses or information.

“Our investigative leads have dried up at this point… any information coming forward, we will investigate further. Sometimes trivial information can help move an investigation forward.”

Jones said she was horrified and the dog would have been incredibly scared and in pain.

“Even if we can’t get enough evidence to do anything, we can at least make it known that it’s a violation of animal welfare law that it’s an offense to mistreat an animal and that is not an acceptable form of euthanasia.

“They might talk to a veterinary clinic or the SPCA instead of taking such drastic action against an animal.”

The SPCA urges anyone with information to contact Rotorua SPCA on (07) 349 2955, quoting work number SB366725.

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