Security warns of ‘crisis’ amid new dog attacks

Thursday July 04, 2019 Written by Published in Local
Last week, Toru was shot and died. 19062806 Last week, Toru was shot and died. 19062806

Concerns are mounting about dogs on Rarotonga, with more reports of dog attacks on tourists and fears that a shooter with an air-rifle is taking matters into his own hands.



A fourth dog was confirmed shot yesterday, and another reported missing. They were not stray or wandering dogs, but were reportedly shot on their own property.


Claud Chloe said one of her children’s dogs was shot and another had gone missing, which was unusual.

She said her neighbour heard “two popping shots, a loud cry and one of our dogs running past home in a fret yesterday”.

When her young daughter returned home to find one of their dogs was bleeding from his face and swollen. His sister, Loner, was nowhere to be found.


“We have searched everywhere for her last night and this morning without luck.“

Last week, dog owner Shelly Rangi arrived home to find her dog Toru shot in the back. He was paralysed and had to be put down at the veterinary clinic.

It is understood pellets removed from one dog, shot last week in Titikaveka area, indicate the weapon used was probably an air rifle, not a sniper’s rifle as security guards had feared. But air rifles can still kill – and at least two dogs have been found shot dead.

Claud Chloe said their family had heard shots earlier in the week, too. “On Monday there were two shots fired that we heard and it terrified our dogs, she said. “What sickens me is this was done on our own property – our dogs do not attack livestock and bite people.

“We got them because we love animals, especially my daughter. They are fed well, guard our home and are very well loved...

“I hope our dog Loner is out there and is okay we can only hope if anyone has seen her please contact me – I’m so sick of this animal cruelty crap here.”

‘Look out for your dogs’

Cook Islands Security says there is a problem with dogs running wild, and dog owners must take responsibility.

Earlier this week, a 10-year old boy holidaying here from America suffered scratches on his arm and back due to a dog attack at a beach side near the Rarotongan Resort.

And Cook Islands Security managing director,Chris Denny said an elderly guest from the Beachcomber Resort was enjoying his cycle through Titikaveka when he was attacked by a dog. He had to be taken to hospital with a bad bite to his leg.  A week ago, Denny said, a young local girl took her family dog on a leash for a beach walk in Vaimaanga and a wandering dog attacked it.

“We believe strongly that every home should have a dog to protect its home,” Denny said. “But the problem now comes back to the dog owner.”

“We all love dogs and we do have friendly dogs that suck up to tourists for a feed, but this must stop and the buck stops with its owner.  Why is it chasing cars and bikes? Why is it wandering our beaches?”

Denny said dogs should be rounded up and owners fined.




1 comment

  • Comment Link Chris Dessa Jnr Saturday, 06 July 2019 06:33 posted by Chris Dessa Jnr

    Our Teenage children are on Holiday in Raro staying at Mountain View Lodge. Had to rent a car due to stray dog packs following them when they decided to take a walk to Avarua. Not good for tourists and our own Cook Island family holidaying.
    What happened to the Police rounding up the stray dogs???

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