Grizz was a 10-month-old bearded collie and German short-haired pointer mix.
The dog had been training with the Aviation Security Service at Auckland Airport, and was just six months away from graduating.
The dog got loose as he "was being loaded into a van by his handler in the public area", reported Sky News. In these hard circumstances the Airport's Emergency Operations Centre team chose to have the dog destroyed.
4am Friday local time (3pm Thursday GMT): Grizz was being moved into a dog unit vehicle when something spooked him, causing him to flee.
Trainee bomb detector puppy shot dead at New Zealand airport.
Let it be known that airport employees can be shot to death if they go running around on the airfield for 3 hours.
The airport then instructed police to shoot the dog.
16 domestic and global flights were delayed as staff attempted to capture the dog, who had been in training to detect explosives.
Grizz didn't have a dedicated handler so wasn't as responsive as the more experienced dogs with a single handler.
"All efforts to recover him failed".
Mr Richards said those involved understood why Grizz had to be killed.
"When he was located he would not let anyone near him and kept sprinting across the runways, " he revealed. "We tried everything, food, toys, other dogs", says a Civil Aviation Authority rep.
"The area is too vast and too open to try and use mobile fencing".
Police assisting Avsec were instructed to shoot Grizz.
Mr Richards said that the escape may have implications in the future training of Avsec dogs.
She said tranquilisation would be part of an incident review undertaken by Avsec.
It costs around £56,000 to train a sniffer dog like Grizz.
Hans Kriek, a member of animal rights group SAFE, said he was "appalled and bewildered" by the decision. "But there were no tranquiliser guns at the airport, and the police do not have them either".
One passenger wrote on Facebook, "Somewhere out there in the rising dawn on the runway is the dog that has eluded capture and delayed our departure by over an hour while we sit on the tarmac".
Each EDD has a human partner, or handler, and they work together to ensure no unsafe materials are present in our airports or on aircraft.
Andrea Midgen, the acting national chief executive for the SPCA, said the airport would only have shot Grizz as a last resort.