A dog that attacked and dragged a 4-year-old boy around the backyard of his Auckland home will be put down.

The boy, Shepherd Mea, suffered multiple bite wounds to his head and face in the attack behind his house in Beatty St, Otahuhu, on Saturday. An Auckland Council spokeswoman said the dog, a bull mastiff cross, had been staying with the family for only a short time.

"The dog is registered to another person and that owner is required to formally surrender the dog in order for it to be euthanised," the spokeswoman said.

"If the owner does not do so, we can seek a court order requiring the dog to be surrendered."


The dog is being held at a council animal shelter. The spokeswoman said the council was investigating the attack and unable to make any further comments at this stage.

Shepherd was moved from intensive care to one of Middlemore Hospital's Kidz First children's wards on Sunday. His condition was considered serious but stable, and multiple operations will be needed to deal with his wounds.

His mother, Katarina Kopa, said she was "glad that he is alive".