Private Members Bill: Replacement of the Dangerous Dogs Act
10/08/2010 7:35 am
Forum members are doubtless aware of the recent epidemic of attack dogs emanating from social housing estates up and down the country and the lack of powers available to tackle this scourge.
The Dangerous Dogs Act Study Group (DDASG) is a wide-ranging group representing animal welfare, local authorities and veterinary professional organisations which includes representation from Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, Blue Cross, British Veterinary Association, Dogs Trust, the Kennel Club, The Mayhew Animal Home, Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, Wandsworth Borough Council and Wood Green Animal Shelter.
DDASG has persuaded Lord Redesdale to table a Private Members Bill in Westminster which provides for the following
• Repeal of the Dogs Act 1871, the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 and the Dangerous Dogs (Amendment) Act 1997 including breed specific legislation
The police expend significant resources on enforcement of the Dangerous Dogs Act in the UK, with large amounts of money being spent on the seizure and kennelling of dogs simply because of their breed type - many of these dogs are returned to their owners once proved to be of good temperament. Removing breed specific legislation would allow resources to be used more effectively elsewhere, and preferably concentrated on those dogs showing unprovoked aggression.
• Introduce Dog Control Notices
The vast majority of dog attacks are a result of the irresponsible actions of dog owners, who have either not taken the time and trouble to train their dog correctly, or have indeed trained them to behave aggressively. Dog Control Notices will apply to all types of dog that have acted dangerously without provocation, caused an injury to another animal, caused harm, or caused a person to reasonably believe it will cause harm and aims to prevent serious incidents of aggression occurring by allowing preventative action.
• Apply to both public AND private places
A large proportion of dog attacks occur in the home and involve a dog that is known to the victim. The Dog Control Bill will make attacks on private property a criminal offence. Greater responsibility is therefore placed on owners to ensure that their dogs are not out of control in any place.
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