A woman who set her pitbull dog on her sister has been jailed for seven years.

Phillipa Bayley, 55, was sentenced in Tauranga District Court today on a charge of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm after using her dog to inflict horrific injuries on her sister during a dispute in May last year.

Bayley's sister Liz Smith was in the public gallery at the beginning of sentencing today but left in tears as details were read out.

The jury in Bailey's trial was unable to determine whether the dog was used in self-defence but the judge determined that it was not.

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A decision on the dog's future is expected later today and it remains in the care of Tauranga pound.