The neighbourhood in Dunlop where a dog was shot by a police officer after reports of attacking people. Photo: Jay Cronan
Police are yet to lay any charges over a vicious dog attack in Canberra's north that left three people injured.
Officers were forced to shoot the "highly aggressive" dog, which survived and was recovering at its home after surgery on Wednesday.
A woman was bailed up by the tan dog, believed to be a mastiff-ridgeback cross, while in a dog park in Dunlop on Tuesday evening.
A man who went to the woman's aid was bitten, and a 17-year-old youth who also tried to help had his clothing ripped.
Acting Belconnen Station Sergeant Carolyn Uhe said police received three separate reports on the attacks before arriving on the scene just before 6pm.
She said an officer had lured the animal away from people before firing three shots.
"The dog was highly aggressive and actually confronted police," she said. "As a result, unfortunately the dog was shot by police."
Sergeant Uhe said other options such as capsicum spray were considered by the officer before he discharged his weapon, but she said it was an appropriate response without risk to people nearby. "There was no risk at all," she said. "They were well away. The [distance] of discharge was only two metres or so."
Police have spoken with the owner of the dog who could not explain how it escaped from a nearby backyard.
Territory and Municipal Services have taken over the investigation.
Director of city services Fleur Flanery said domestic animal services were working with the police, but they could not yet confirm if the animal would be destroyed.
''It's not appropriate at the moment to take that dog,'' she said.
Ms Flanery said staff had carried out an assessment of the dog, which did not have a history with domestic animal services, and also inspected its enclosure
''We've done a fence inspection and there are some areas where we've asked the owner to improve the safety of the fence,'' she said.
Ms Flanery said there were a range of infringements that could be issued in a such a situation, but nothing could be confirmed until the investigation was final.
The incident has shocked Dunlop residents. One described the area as home to many young families. ''It's certainly a one-off,'' he said. ''This is a great area. Most people have little 'pookie' dogs. I don't know where that dog came from.''
An ACT Policing spokeswoman said the last incident involving an attack was in 2010. Authorities were forced to destroy two dogs after a series of attacks.