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Report confirms rise in dog attacks

Aug 10, 2007 6:54 AM

Data has been released showing the number of dog attacks has increased in New Zealand over the past 10 years.

The research is published in the New Zealand Medical Journal.

There have been five fatal dog attacks reported in this country - the first in 1969.

Around 300 people a year are hospitalised through dog bites, but researcher David Healey believes there are almost 3,500 dog attacks every year.

He points out in the US, three quarters of all dog attacks are caused by just five breeds - pit bull, rottweiler, german shepherd, husky and malamute.

But he says targeting specific breeds has had little success in other countries and suggests a better approach is to target chronically irresponsible owners.

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