A family is fighting to stop its boxer-cross dog being put down after it bit a man on their property.

Christopher Neubusch, 45, pleaded guilty to a charge of owning a dog that attacked a man when he appeared at the Waitakere District Court yesterday.

Two other charges of allowing a dog to roam were dropped by Auckland Council prosecutor Wendy Wilkinson.

Under the Dog Control Act, any dog that attacks a person must be destroyed unless the "circumstances of the offence were exceptional".


Neubusch is trying to save Chips' life and said the case is exceptional.

The council summary of facts released to APNZ described the attack as "unprovoked".

It said the gate to Neubusch's Henderson home was open and his dogs, Fish and Chips, rushed at the victim, who stood still before Chips jumped at him and bit him on the elbow.

After the attack, Neubusch dressed the man's wounds and apologised. The council said the victim told a dog control officer he feared for his life during the attack.

Later that day the man had about 10 stitches put in his arm by doctors. He had to go back to the clinic every day for the next four days and still has two small scars.

But in a statement issued through his lawyer, Scott Leith, Neubusch said there were reasons for the attack and noted the council was not opposing his bid to save Chips.

He said the incident occurred after he sold a table on Trade Me. When the buyer came to pick it up he went down the side of the house where Fish and Chips were.

Neubusch alleges the buyer kicked Fish in the stomach after both dogs started barking. Chips then bit the man.

"This gentleman should never have been at the rear of our section and should never have kicked our dog in the stomach.

"While we regret that our other dog bit him, it is clear to us that the dog was only acting in defence in a situation that should never have arisen."

According to the council, Neubusch has since put up signs warning people of the dogs and has created a fenced area in his backyard for them.

Neubusch will be sentenced in April and will ask the Court not to order that Chips be put down. He faces a maximum fine of $3000.