Owner of Pui O fatal attack dogs says she’s a victim
A Pui O dog-owner responsible for multiple attacks, including two fatalities, says it’s unfair to blame her.
“It is impossible to avoid accidents,” said Ms Choi in an interview with Apple Daily. She said the number of incidents was small.
“It is unfair of other dog owners to put the blame all on a single person,” she said. “I am also a victim.”
Choi contacted the Apple Daily after it published an article on Saturday describing the repeated attacks by her pets on other dogs.
Two dogs have died and at least half a dozen others have been injured in attacks that go back at least six years. Choi’s dogs also frequently chase and attack local buffalo herds.
Choi, who describes herself as a dog lover, she says she has raised 17 dogs in ten years living in Pui O.
Okka Scherer, who runs a dog rescue home at Pui O, says her dog Siu San (photo above) died after being attacked by three dogs in her front garden in February – one of many attacks, including one in which her helper was bitten on the leg.
She incurred veterinary costs of HK$20,000 as a result of an attack on her dog Rayban last October.
After Choi paid just the first HK$8000, Scherer took her the Small Claims Tribunal and won, but Choi has still not settled the full amount.
The police and the AFCD have declined to take action against Choi. AFCD has ordered Choi to muzzle her dogs, but Scherer says she has never seen her dogs wearing a muzzle.
Another owner whose dog was attacked is Cecilie Gamst-Berg, whose pet was badly injured in 2015.
Gamst-Berg said after the attack Choi was “ordered to muzzle the dogs but never did. They never paid my vet bill (HK$2,000) and never said sorry.”
She said she had reported Choi and her dogs to the AFCD two years earlier – yet after the second attack the department claimed not to have had any previous complaints.
Apple Daily story said Choi is a well-known local antique collector with a property portfolio worth than HK$50 million.
The paper says Choi had declined to respond when initially contacted, but approached the journalist after publication of the two articles on Saturday.
At least four more dead in latest Tung Chung dog poisonings
Four dogs have died and another is missing in another case of poisoning in Tung Chung.
More than 20 sparrows died from ingesting poison in Ma Wan Chung village.
A 69-year-old indigenous villager, Wong, found one of his dogs choking when he went to feed them early Friday evening, Apple Daily reports.
When he went to search for his other dogs he found a number of dead sparrows and suspected they poisoned bait had been laid.
He found three of his dogs had died while the other is still missing.
SPCA officials and more than 20 police officers went to the scene Saturday morning and found three dead dogs in separate locations and around 15 dead sparrows.
Five sparrows were sent to the Kadoorie Farm for treatment but later died.
Police appealed to the villagers for information about the poison or anyone who may have left out poisoned bait.
FEHD workers cleaned the road and footpath with high-pressure water cannons.
In November 11 dogs died of poisoning in separate incidents in Tung Chung and San Tau village. No arrests have been made over those deaths.
Police urge those with any information about the case to call on 3661 1931.
Photos: Apple Daily
These beautiful pups would love to go home with you this Christmas
Pets aren’t best viewed as gifts, but if you have a loved one that you know will care for a dog for its whole life, then maybe a puppy can be that last-minute Christmas present.
Or take one home for yourself.
PALS in Mui Wo has these two sets of beautiful siblings who would love to go home with you this Christmas.
These cute guys were found at Ngong Ping.
And these irresistible pups came from a New Territories construction site.
If you’re interested, Jaqui Green and her PALS volunteers will be at the Discovery Bay Plaza from midday until 4:00 p.m tomorrow (Christmas Eve).
Or you contact them on 9197 4371 or email: email@example.com.
Tung Chung dog poisonings: death toll rises to 11
The toll in the Tung Chung dog poison case is now 11 following the deaths of five more pets.
In the latest incident, an 80-year-old resident of San Tau, where six dogs died in the early hours of Saturday, called police at 8am Sunday morning after two of his dogs fell ill.
A female dog died at the scene and the other was sent to the SPCA. The second dog, a male, died this morning, SPCA told Lantau News.
Three more dogs died at the Tung Chung Animal Clinic on Saturday, all of whom had been near the Hau Wong Temple, about three kilometres east of San Tau.
Local residents have said they found meat balls suspected of being mixed with poison near the temple and had shared photos via social media, Apple Daily reported.
The head of the pet clinic said that at about 11am on Saturday a dog owner brought in two pets he had been walking at the Hau Wong Temple. Both were vomiting and were suspected of being poisoned.
One died shortly after reaching the clinic, while the other stabilised after receiving an injection. However, after the effects of that wore off at around 6 pm it began convulsing again. The owner, not wanting to see it suffer further, agreed to let it be euthanised.
At 4pm another dog was brought to the clinic which had also been walked near the Hau Wong Temple. The owner said she had seen the dog eating something on the side of the road. After she returned home, it began to convulse and died only a few minutes later.
The AFCD is conducting post-mortems on the deceased animals.
Police arrested a San Tau man on Saturday morning on suspected criminal damage after he allegedly slashed his neighbours’ bike tyres following the sudden deaths of six of his dogs. Lantau North police are investigating.
Photo: Hau Wong Temple, Tung Chung
Six dogs dead, tyres slashed in N. Lantau village dispute
Police have arrested a 45-year-old villager who allegedly slashed his neighbours’ bicycle tyres after six of his dogs died from poison.
The villager, surnamed Cheng, was arrested on suspicion of criminal damage. He is said to have had a series of arguments with his neighbours in San Tau, a coastal village opposite Chek Lap Kok Island, about 4 kilometres west of Tung Chung.
When Cheng’s wife fed their dogs congee early yesterday morning, one of them immediately began to vomit and convulse, HK01 reported. It died shortly after, followed by five others in quick succession. Two others are missing.
SPCA staff visited the village yesterday morning and confirmed the dog deaths were a result of poison.
Mrs Cheng said her husband was an indigenous villager who had moved back to San Tau about a year ago. But the couple had felt targeted by the villagers.
Just two days ago she had been woken by dogs barking at 4am. She found one of dog injured but had also encountered a neighbour with a torch near their home. “I wondered why he was wandering near our home at that early hour,” she said.
But unnamed villagers told HK01 that Cheng wasn’t popular in the village and had threatened his neighbours with knives and broken their windows. Before he and his wife moved in, the village was peaceful, they said.
Due to the poor relationship between Yin and its neighbors, the police were called to the village almost every week. said: “We are so anxious we have even installed closed-circuit television and new gates,” one said.
Lantau North Police are investigating.
Photo (top): ‘Dangerous dog within’ – San Tau sign
The Lantau fox is doing well but still hasn’t found a home
Three months after being found hungry and homeless, the Lantau red fox is doing well in quarantine at Ocean Park.
According to the park, right now “he is in good health, his appetite is good, and his weight is significantly higher,” according to HK Animal Post.
The baby fox was found in the Tong Fuk catchwater by snake-watcher Ivan Li in July. Li’s photos of the rescue went viral and were picked up by local media.
The animal, just a few months old when discovered, is not native to Hong Kong but is a popular pet in some countries. Most likely it was abandoned by its owner or those who smuggled it into the city.
The fox is half-way through its six-month quarantine period. However, Ocean Park has said it can’t look after it permanently because it is not compatible with its existing Arctic foxes and it lacks the expertise to care for it.
In a letter to lawmaker Roy Kwong, the park said it is still in discussions over the fox’s long-term future, though it is committed to caring it it until the AFCD and the SPCA make final arrangements.
A spokesperson for the SPCA said some foreign animal care organisations had expressed interest in providing a permanent home, but each had different quarantine procedures and import regulations. The SPCA is still studying these.
However, the association doesn’t rule out the possibility of the fox being adopted in Hong Kong by experts with the right knowledge. It has submitted a proposal to the AFCD about the options for care of small foxes. The AFCD has not yet responded.
Roy Kwong said: “Bless him, I hope that the small red fox can be like a [Hong Kong] drugstore cat and be adopted in a good local home.”
Lantau rescue fox can’t find a home
The abandoned marble fox rescued in South Lantau three weeks ago can’t find a home.
The young male was discovered in a distressed state in the catchwater near Tong Fuk and sent to Ocean Park for care.
But Ocean Park has announced that it can’t keep the animal because it is incompatible with the other species in its care. Genetic tests show the animal is a red fox.
After taking numerous factors into consideration, the Park concludes that the fox is not compatible with Ocean Park’s current collection, including the Arctic foxes, and the park is unable to provide a suitable facility with the desired level of animal welfare standards for the fox in the long run,
Elaborating, the SPCA said in a Facebook post that as well as not meeting with Ocean Park’s animal policies, the park also lacked the facilities and staff resources and expertise to take care of the fox.
It said Kadoorie Farm also couldn’t accommodate it for similar reasons.
The animal will remain at Ocean Park while the SPCA, Ocean Park and the Agricultural, Fisheries and Conservation Department discuss its future.
But for now no one can suggest where it will find a permanent home.
Lantau rescue fox still under SPCA observation
The marble fox rescued from Lantau Friday night is still being monitored by the SPCA.
The fox, found in the catchwater near Tong Fuk, is eating well but “still very skinny,” a spokesperson told Lantau News.
The animal is a young male, still with his baby teeth, and is in a stable condition, the spokesperson said.
He is being monitored by vets at the SPCA’s Kowloon Centre for rabies and other diseases. The association couldn’t give an estimate on how long he had been wandering in South Lantau.
The fox, a domesticated breed and most likely abandoned by his owner, was discovered late Friday evening by a group on a snake safari and rescued by the fire department.
The SPCA said it is still in discussions with the AFCD, Kadoorie Farm and Ocean Park about where to place the young fox after it recovers.
UPDATE (July 22): The fox has been sent to Ocean Park.
Photo: Ivan Li
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Lantau fox in SPCA care after catchwater rescue
A marble fox found in the catchwater at Tong Fuk is being kept under observation by the SPCA.
The 50cm long fox, discovered in the catchwater late Friday night, was rescued by the Fire Department and put into the care of the SPCA. It had been in the area for at least two days.
The SPCA says the animal is at the Kowloon Centre where it is being monitored for signs of rabies or other disease. It says it hasn’t decided what to do with the animal, but may hand it to the Kadoorie Farm or Ocean Park, a spokesperson told told Apple Daily.
After an initial inspection the animal was found to be uninjured and basically healthy, but very thin, the association said. It was difficult to examine it closely because of its fear of humans. Its age and sex are still unclear.
The marble fox is a domesticated breed, a combination of genetic manipulation of the red and Arctic foxes. It almost certainly has either been abandoned by its owners or has escaped from its home or from smugglers.
Ivan Li, who found the animal while on a nocturnal snake safari, said it was very thin and hungry and tried to feed it some bred. He believes it was left there by its owners. He criticised those who “abandon alien species” in Hong Kong.
Top photo: In the catchwater (Ivan Li)
Are we paying too much for the vet?
Hong Kong pet owners are at cats and dogs over the cost of vets.
A study released by the Veterinary Services Board this week finds that 47.5% believe fees are unreasonable, while 45.2% are quite comfortable with them.
The biggest beef is the cost of consultation: in two-thirds of clinics, a general consultation with a dog or cat costs $200-299. Of those who had taken their pet to the vet in the past 12 months, the median expenditure was $2,000.
Overall, however, 62% say they’re satisfied with the value received and 77% are happy with surgeons’ professional knowledge.
Despite the discontent over prices, the Hong Kong vet market is over-supplied. We have one of the world’s lowest vet-to-pet ratios and it may be about to get worse.
In 2010 the city had one vet for every 735 pets, compared to 1:2543 for Singapore and 1:3072 for the US. The number of vets working here has doubled in the past 10 years and is forecast to grow by another 20% in the next three years, the report says.
We may also see an influx of graduate vets returning from abroad. Approximately 240 Hong Kong students are studying veterinary science in foreign universities, 59% of whom say they are likely to return to Hong Kong.
At the same time, Hong Kong’s love affair with cats and dogs is cooling. The number of pet dogs and cats increased by 71% from 2005-15, but will grow just 7% over the next three years, the study found.
The report estimates that 14.8% of Hong Kong households have a pet, and just under 11% of households keep a cat and/or dog (by comparison around half of all UK households have a pet cat or dog.)
The study doesn’t reference Lantau specifically but this area is part of the biggest pet-loving region of the city. NT West, which includes the outlying islands as well as Tuen Mun and Tsuen Wan, accounts for 38.3% of all pets. The region also has the largest number of vet clinics, representing 39 of the city’s 146 total.
Lantau has five vet clinics. South Lantau, with two vet centres serving approximately 10,000 people, has as many as Tung Chung, with several times the population. Discovery Bay has a single clinic.
According to the study, the biggest problem for the clinics is high rents (81%), followed by the level of competition (36%) and the lack of qualified support staff (34%). A third also cited ‘difficult customers’ as one of their biggest issues.
The full report is available here.