Local dogs ‘more bark than bite’

Esther Honey’s practice manager Carl Hartnett with volunteer from Italy Martina Majavacchi – who has been at the clinic for two and a half months – and dogs Flora (left) and Candy.

Esther Honey’s practice manager Carl Hartnett with volunteer from Italy Martina Majavacchi – who has been at the clinic for two and a half months – and dogs Flora (left) and Candy.

Cook Islands News

Aug 31, 2013

Following two letters of complaint to CINews about roaming dogs, Esther Honey’s practice manager Carl Hartnett says Rarotongan dogs are generally more bark than bite.

“If you go to any of the Pacific Islands you’ll have dogs roaming everywhere – and the Rarotongan dogs are more friendly. Generally the problem will come if they’re territorial.

“But an attack would be really rare here. It’s really common in the Western world to get dog attacks, like in New Zealand and Australia, but here the dogs are generally just so happy and friendly. Mostly it’s just bark.”

In a letter to the editor, published Tuesday August 27, Hartnett said Esther Honey’s dog census has shown the number of island dogs has declined significantly over the years, with the foundation desexing more than 13,800 animals.

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