Airport security dog shot, killed after running loose on tarmac


An Aviation Security Services dog was shot dead by New Zealand police on Friday morning after it was spooked and escaped its handler at Auckland International Airport, causing runway delays.

Grizz escaped from his handler at around 4.30 a.m. Friday (local time) and ran out onto the tarmac at Auckland Airport, according to the CAA spokesman.

Despite attempts by Auckland Airport and aviation security staff to catch the dog, it was loose for several hours.

Officials claim that as flights were being delayed due to the ruckus caused by the little dog, it was killed.

The Aviation Security Service has 32 dogs employed at airports across New Zealand.

Many concerned people have questioned why Grizz was not tranquillised rather than shot dead.

"This is not an outcome which anyone wanted", she said.

In an unfortunate turn of events, a gate to the airside area had been opened to let a truck through, and Grizz took advantage and ran onto the tarmac.

The lengthy dog-chase disrupted at least 16 flights.

But, after 16 flights had to be delayed, they gave police the go ahead to shoot the 10-month-old border collie and German shorthaired pointer mix.

Among those who criticised the decision to shoot Grizz was popular TVNZ breakfast show host Hilary Barry, who said: "They've got to have tranquiliser guns, surely".

"The dog was clearly distressed and wouldn't let anyone near it so the decision was made to shoot the dog", said airport spokeswoman Lisa Mulitalo.

He said an investigation is underway to determine what spooked Grizz and if it will have any implications for ongoing training. "So we don't understand why they didn't do that", he said. An animal rights activist, however, says a tranquilizer gun should have been used. "Each EDD team consists of one dog and one handler", the website said.

It's reported that Avsec have a staffer who shoots birds at the airport, but that staff member could not get to the airport in time, therefore police were ordered to shoot Grizz.

"Our dog teams search for any explosives in vehicle parks, navigation facilities, unattended cars and unattended items/bags, cargo, and aircraft", the website said.