The Kaipara District Council is urging residents to register their menacing dogs.
"Owners of menacing type dogs are obligated to have their pets neutered or spayed as part of the national strategy to reduce the risk and harm of dog attacks," said Kaipara District Council spokesman Ben Hope.
Under New Zealand laws four breeds and one type of dog are automatically classified as menacing. These are the breeds Brazilian fila, Japanese tosa, dogo Argentino and perro de presa canario and the American pitbull terrier type of dog.
National and local law require all classified menacing dogs to be de-sexed and microchipped. They must also be muzzled while in a public space.
"Council is working to ensure all menacing dogs in our District are compliant with the classification. Known dog owners with menacing type dogs will receive an information pack in the mail shortly."
"We encourage owners of menacing dogs to get in behind this programme and help make our communities safer."
"Sadly, New Zealand has many unwanted and neglected dogs that end up in animal shelters. De-sexing and responsible ownership are the only way to address the cause," said Hope.
Tips for keeping children safe from dog bites:
Always supervise small children around dogs
• put your dog in another room on occasions such as children's parties where it could become over-excited
• remember any dog that is provoked or frightened could growl, snap at or bite a child
• speak to visiting children on how they should behave around your dog
• children should not be allowed to shriek and leap around a dog as it may cause the dog to react badly. Similarly do not let a child sit on a dog or grab its tail
• keep children away from a dog that is sick, tired or has puppies
• socialise your dog with children
• don't let children tease your dog, hurt it, tightly hug it or put their faces close to its face
• keep children away from dogs on a chain
• keep children away from dogs that are eating or sleeping.
Mainly Music group celebrates 25-year anniversary
Hopping bopping and bouncing around was all the rage with children from zero to 5 as they celebrated the 25-year anniversary of Mainly Music in Dargaville.
Mainly Music is a Christian-based music programme for parents and primary caregivers to enjoy with their young children, based at the Dargaville Baptist Church.
Team leader Rebecca Davidson has been with the programme for 14 years and said it was a full on day with lots of balloons, cake and the usual singing and dancing. There was a larger than usual crowd with 32 bubs and tots attending, she said.
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Karla Parker is one of the group's original members having first joined 23 years ago when her son was a baby. She now has a daughter Rose Oliver, aged 2, who enjoys it just as much and she also takes along other children in her care as a homebased carer.
"I just love the togetherness and friendliness of it, plus it's regular as it's never cancelled - come rain or shine it's always on every Wednesday, so it's a good routine if you've got little ones."
She also said the morning tea afterwards with snacks, cakes and treats is a definite bonus and she hoped that would never change.
Former team leader Alex Bickers also attended the celebrations in support and said it was a wonderful celebration of families old and new.
"It brought back great memories and what it showed me was that songs that we were doing 25 years ago are just as relevant today and engaging."
Mainly Music is held every Wednesday from 10-11am at the Dargaville Baptist Church, a gold coin donation is requested to cover the costs of purchasing items to help run the programme.
New computers draw new attention to local library
Local school kids descended on Dargaville Library after it received 12 Chromebooks for them to use.
Gone are the five old PCs and in there place are a new colour printer, four Chrome stations and 12 Chromebooks with touch screens.
Library manager Lisa Salter said that since receiving the 12 new Chromebooks the library has become a lot quieter despite being busier.
"We are also seeing a lot more girls coming in now and I think that's because previously the boys took over the limited supply of computers that we had, now there are enough computers to share, the girls are coming in and using them."
Dargaville Intermediate School student Georgina Kapa-Smith said the new Chromebooks are great and she and her friends all enjoy going there after school to use them.
The computers come with free wifi which is available 24/7 in the building.
"Free internet and computing equipment in public libraries opens up the digital world to all people by removing barriers like cost and geography, giving people free access to information, just like a library does," said council spokesman Ben Hope.
Kaipara District Council contributes just over $5000 per year to provide these services to residents, with the rest funded by the National Library.
"Our four Community Libraries at Paparoa, Maungaturoto, Kaiwaka and Mangawhai provide free wifi to their communities with funds from their contract for service grant with council," said Hope.
Kaipara council sets the standard in food health
Kaipara District Council has done well in a recent audit to assess their environmental health.
"We are the first council in New Zealand to go through the food accreditation programme without any non-conformities," said council spokesman Ben Hope.
Kaipara District Council has achieved the milestone following their environmental health accreditation assessment audit by Joint Accreditation Services Australia, New Zealand (JAS-ANZ) which closed with zero non-conformances.
The team were able to competently respond to each question raised and could clearly demonstrate the processes being followed were directly aligned to the QMS.
"As a result of this amazing outcome, JAS-ANZ has confirmed it is recommending to MPI that KDC should proceed to accreditation as an authority for food control plans as well as national programmes 1, 2 and 3," said Mr Hope.
General manager, regulatory, planning and policy Fran Mikulicic said, "this is an outstanding result for the team, and for Kaipara District Council. Ensuring we're technically compliant and meeting legislation can be detail heavy and time consuming work, so to get such a glowing report from both JAS-ANZ and MPI is fantastic recognition."
Sue Williams, lead auditor for JAS-ANZ, commended KDC and said, "this sets a new benchmark across New Zealand".
"In addition, Ministry of Primary Industries has asked if KDC can be used as a reference point for other councils; they want us to present our systems to the next environmental health conference and would like to promote our success in the MPI newsletter, so we can share our work with other councils who are struggling," said Hope.
The Food Act 2014 requires all territorial authorities which are currently issuing food business registration certificates to be accredited by September 2019.
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