No council in New Zealand should use captive bolt guns on impounded dogs, an animal welfare group says.

The Invercargill City Council yesterday suspended the use of the guns and will set up a community engagement panel to discuss options for rehoming and euthanising dogs. It will use lethal injections until further notice.

The move follows widespread controversy over a leaked video obtained by the Herald two weeks ago, which showed an impounded dog being shot with a bolt gun and the officer knocking its head several times afterwards with a foot.

The Ministry for Primary Industries inspected the pound days later, finding the council's procedures to be acceptable.


But it recommended that the captive bolt gun method be reviewed by a senior veterinarian.

At yesterday's council meeting, deputy Mayor Rebecca Amundsen said there had been a firm and "loud" public response to the footage and called for the panel to be set up, involving the community and expert advice.

That panel will then recommend a preferred method for euthanising dogs, Amundsen said.

Paw Justice's co-founder, Craig Dunn, says he is glad the council listened to its community and stopped using the guns.

But he says the public outcry sends a clear message to other councils in New Zealand.

Dunn says it's unclear how many councils are using the captive bolt guns, but would like to see a nationwide ban on them.