Jerran Puru loves his tan and white pitbull Paco.

Despite losing a legal bid to stop the animal being put down for biting a postie and rising impounding fees that have so far topped $5000, the Hikurangi man is going to the High Court to save his prized pooch.

He filed his appeal after the Whangarei District Court ruled the unregistered dog should be destroyed for attacking the postie. Paco was seized by animal control officers employed by the Whangarei District Council after it rushed and bit a postie on March 23 this year.

The postie went to Puru's home on Buchanan St, Hikurangi, to deliver a parcel that had to be signed for when an unrestrained Paco attacked her.


Puru, 29, earlier pleaded guilty to one charge of being the owner of a dog that attacked a person and another of failing to register a dog. He appeared in court this week to argue that his dog not to be destroyed because the circumstances of the attack were exceptional and did not justify destruction.

Lawyer Darrell Hart, acting for the council, called the postie and the animal control officer. Puru was self represented and called his brother Brock Puru to testify on his behalf.

The postie said a day before the attack, she went to Puru's home to deliver a parcel, but Paco lunged and snarled at her. No one was home so she returned the next day.

On March 23, she called out from the driveway before Paco "flew out" from the side of the garage and attacked her. She was bitten on the ring finger of her right hand and around the thumb of the other hand.

"As quickly as it bit me it went back," she said.

Her ring finger still would not bend and she required an X-ray and a tetanus shot after the attack.

Brock Puru admitted he let Paco off the leash that day and took him to the garage because he did not expect anyone on the property because it was raining. He admitted the attack was unprovoked. He insisted there was a gate on the property but the postie said she did not notice it.

Judge Colin Doherty ordered the dog's destruction and fined Puru $300 on each charge and $130 in court cost. Puru has been ordered to pay $150 of the $600 to the postie.

Puru said he did not feel his dog had to be killed and filed appeal papers in the High Court.