Man's best friend is about to become more expensive, with Hastings District Council set to increase dog fees from July.
The fee increase comes after several years with no increase, while costs for council have increased from 300 sheep attacks in rural Hastings.
Each attack means the council's Animal Control unit spends a lot of time and money investigating and prosecuting.
Hastings District Councillor Bayden Barber said in his experience "good working dogs" were not to blame for sheep attacks.
"Normally urban dogs that have been brought into a rural setting - never seen sheep before - and 'nek minnit' they are ripping into them."
Hastings District Council Regulatory Solutions Manager John Payne said "further out" from urban areas, some working dogs had been involved in stock worrying but it was "generally non-working dogs that cause the problem".
"I guess you've got to get the balance right as to who needs to pay for the service," he said.
The fee for rural dogs is jumping 17 per cent to $56, which is about half the price of the urban fee which is rising just 5 per cent to $115.
New fees would be introduced for the seizure and destruction of dogs.
Hastings Deputy Mayor and Rural Community Board member Tania Kerr said she would ask if working dog fees could be separated out from the rural dog fee in the future.
"At the moment, if you have a pet poodle in the country, you pay the same per-dog fee as your maybe-farmer neighbour pays for each of his working dogs," she said.
"I am looking at asking the Rural Community Board to investigate the rural working dog fees."
She said fees did not cover all Animal Control costs, with the general public picking up the rest of the bill.
"The public gets the benefit of us having a very good animal control team," Kerr said.
"By having the bylaws and protections in place that make it safe for our public to get out and about in the community without fear of dangerous dogs roaming.
"We have a team that looks out for them and looks after the community."
The dog fee increase will be reviewed annually.
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