A policeman has shot dead a dog that was set on him as he attempted to arrest a man in the Bay of Plenty.
The officer was bitten several times before he shot the animal at Murupara on Monday night, police say.
The incident began when police stopped a man following reports of a suspicious vehicle.
The man released three of five dogs in the direction of the constable, says Senior Sergeant Mal Collins said.
One dog bit the officer several times before it was shot. It died at the scene.
"The officer used his training and tactical options to ensure his own safety and that of the community was preserved," Snr Sgt Collins said.
The officer was treated by ambulance staff.
The other two dogs followed the suspect, who had left on foot.
He has not yet been caught, but is known to police.