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Supporting Wairoa’s pet owners

Pound 2

Wairoa’s dog and pet population is also recovering from the devastation of Cyclone Gabrielle.

Many dogs were displaced after the flooding, and now people who have had to temporarily leave their homes, or who took on other people’s displaced dogs, are looking to rehome them. There is also an increase is roaming dogs that may have been displaced from their homes.

Wairoa District Council Chief Executive Kitea Tipuna said not only has the community been through a horrific time, but also our animals. “The cyclone was distressing, and some pets could still be traumatised, especially when it rains.

“We urge local people who have been displaced or had to move, to update their dog registration details with Council. Or if you are missing a dog, please let us know as we would always prefer to reunite a dog with its owner.

“While we are happy to work with local dog owners, there are still obligations for dog owners such as ensuring your dogs are registered, are always controlled and, on a lead, if you are out in public.

“This April we are offering free microchipping and encourage owners to take advantage of this free service. Microchipping can protect your dog by making it identifiable if it gets lost or is stolen.”

Mr Tipuna said staff were devastated for pet owners who simply didn’t have time to gather their domestic pets and also for the major loss of stock throughout the district.

“Many owners gave their animals to Council to provide shelter and care in the crisis. In total 31 domestic animals and stock were cared for ranging from horses, cows, sheep and goats to dogs, cats, and turtles.

“Council staff worked with local vets to secure and settle animals both at vet clinics and on Council land. Council is still providing after care for some people who have been unable to return to their homes.

“Flooding also impacted the Council dog pound and given the speed of the rising flood water it was fortunate that dogs in the pound were able to be rescued. With a complete scrub down and replacement of materials the pound was back functioning within a fortnight and has been used to shelter dogs whose owners are working through their housing process.”

Mr Tipuna said Council was also grateful for the many pet food donations which were flown into Wairoa and distributed where there was local need. “A big thanks to those people who helped get food bags ready, delivered food bags and to those who cared and nurtured pets they took on during this time. We also have dog leads that have been donated and are available for collection from the Council offices.

“Council is here to help and is just a phone call away for anyone who needs assistance with their pets. It has been a disruptive time and getting your pet back into a settled routine may take a while. We recommend that you check on your pets often, ensure they are comfortable and reassure them. We are on call 24/7, just phone 06 838 7309 if you have any inquiries or animal concerns.”

Caption: Pound 2: Inside the flooded dog pound on Kaimoana Road.

22 March 2023

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