Wellington SPCA are hailing a young boy who saved a dog that was being attacked with a cricket bat.
On Thursday afternoon, Damon Boyer-Marwood, 12, was walking home from Brandon Intermediate School in Cannons Creek when he heard an animal yelping.
He investigated and found a group of several boys around his age attacking a small female terrier cross dog.
The boys were holding the dog down and taking turns to kick it.
One of the boys also had a cricket bat and was hitting the dog with it, a Wellington SPCA spokesman said.
Damon told the group of boys to leave. "They stood there for a bit, then they ran inside."
He said he did not think it was fair that the boys were hitting Rose.
Damon took the dog to a friend's house, before calling the SPCA.
The dog was said to be "very scared and shaky" and had extensive bruising.
She was traced through a microchip, and returned to her owner Sosefina Leota yesterday.
Leota met Damon to thank him.
"I want to thank him from my heart, I want to know his face."
Damon's grandmother Jenny Marwood said she was proud of him. "It makes you wonder what would have happened if he didn't step in."
Wellington SPCA inspector Kaycee Polkinghorne said the matter was being investigated, with police help.
"Because of the ages, there's not a lot we can do prosecution-wise, but it does reinforce the importance of having education in schools about things like this. You just have to to wonder what's going on to make them think this is acceptable behaviour."
"I just hope there are more kids out there who are willing to stand up for what's right and not be afraid to say it."
The SPCA hopes to present Damon with a bravery award.