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SPCA prosecutes man for docking puppies’ tails

24 June 2020
SPCA prosecutes man for docking puppies’ tails

A Christchurch man has been prosecuted by SPCA after docking the tails of two boxer puppies.

The man was sentenced at the Christchurch District Court yesterday to two charges of docking the dogs’ tails. He was sentenced to a fine of $400 and ordered to pay legal costs of $150 all payable to SPCA. He was also ordered to pay $150.00 court costs.

SPCA was alerted to the case in mid-October last year after the defendant took two 10-week old Boxer puppies for vaccinations at a veterinary clinic. The puppies, one female and one male, both presented with shortened tails which appeared to be artificially docked.

SPCA CEO Andrea Midgen says there is absolutely no reason to remove a dog’s tail unless they have damaged their tail in some way.

“Tail docking is only able to be legally performed by a veterinarian or vet student under supervision, and only for therapeutic purposes, not for breed specific or cosmetic purposes.”

SPCA Inspectors visited the property of the defendant and observed the male puppy. The female puppy had been sold to a new owner. The man admitted he had docked both puppies’ tails when they were just 3 – 4 days old, and said that he believed the prohibition was not yet in place.

“These puppies suffered as a result of their home surgery procedure,” Ms Midgen says.

The man stated he had placed a plastic tube with a rubber ring over the puppies’ tails, and rolled the ring on to the tail to the desired location.

“Tail docking is illegal and people who persist using this outdated practice will be investigated with a view to prosecution,” says Ms Midgen.

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