The owner of a West Auckland doggy daycare is facing criminal charges over the death of a dog at her facility.
But she denies accusations of ill treating the animal.
Wilson, a 17-month-old huntaway-doberman cross, was found dead and covered in bite wounds at Valley Dog Daycare on May 9 last year.
At the time it was thought Wilson had been mauled by other dogs at the daycare site.
Valley Dog Daycare owner Trudi Jan Hewett was charged over Wilson's death and appeared in the Waitakere District Court this morning.
The 60-year-old pleaded not guilty to two charges related to the ill-treatment through failure to supervise the dogs.
At the time Hewett said she was so upset by the dog's death she immediately closed the facility.
Shortly after Wilson's death, owner Bridget Chung told the Herald she was absolutely devastated.
"We are doing everything we can to ascertain exactly what happened, and want to ensure that no other animal entrusted to a daycare facility has to endure what Wilson did," Chung said.
The case sparked the SPCA to remind people to be careful about picking facilities carefully while calling for greater regulation of them.
Doggy daycare was an unregulated industry, SPCA Auckland chief executive Andrea Midgen said at the time, but operators still must comply with the Animal Welfare Act 1999.
"We would like to see further regulations in all businesses that care for animals to ensure the animal welfare needs are always met," she said.
Doggy daycare was a good option for dog owners who work away from home, but Midgen said owners should choose their facility carefully.
"Ask the staff questions about if the dogs are continually supervised during the day, what are the emergency response protocols, staffing numbers and if they have relevant animal welfare or animal behaviour qualifications, and visit the premises to see where they will be during the day.
"It's important to note too that not all dogs are suited to a doggy daycare environment, so taking your dog for a trial day to see how they cope is essential."
Hewett was charged with reckless ill-treatment of Wilson, by not adequately supervising the dogs, causing Wilson to "suffer unreasonable and unnecessary pain or distress" with the result he died.
The maximum penalty for this offence is a fine not exceeding $75,000 and/or three years imprisonment.
Hewett is also charged with the ill-treatment of Wilson, by not adequately supervising the dogs, causing Wilson to "suffer unreasonable and unnecessary pain or distress".
The maximum penalty for this offence is a fine not exceeding $50,000 and/or a year imprisonment.
Hewett is due to appear back in court later this year.