THE LAW AND YOUR DOG
and what every responsible owner needs to know.
Dog owners should be aware of the laws that affect you and your dogs.
Dogs act 1871
It is a civil offence if a dog is dangerous to people or animals and not kept under proper control [ generally regarded as not kept on a lead or muzzle ].
This law can apply wherever an incident happens if you breach the law your dog
Could be subject to a control or a destruction oder and you may have to pay costs.
Dogs [ protection of livestock ] Act 1953
Your dog must not worry [ chase or attack ] livestock [ cattle, sheep ,goats, pigs, horses, and poultry ] on agricultural land.
If your dog worries livestock,the farmer has the right to stop your dog [ EVEN BY SHOOTING YOUR DOG IN CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES ].
Animal Boarding Establishment Act 1963
Anyone boarding animals as a business [ even at home ] needs to be licensed by the
Animals Act 1971
You could be liable for damage caused by your dog under this act or under some degree of negligence, it is highly advisable to have third party insurance to cover this.
Something that is included in most pet and some household insurance policies.
The Road Traffic Act 1988
It is an offence to have a dog on a designated road without it deing held on a lead.
Local authorities may have similar byelaws covering public areas.
Dogs travelling in vehicles should not be a nuisance or in any way distract the driver during a journey.
If a dog is injured in a car accident ,the driver must stop and give their details to the person in charge of the dog.
The incident must be reported to the police within 24 hours.
Dangerous Dog Act 1991
It is a criminal offence [ FOR THE OWNER [ and or the person in charge of the dog to allow a dog to be DANGEROUSLY out of control in a public place, a place where it is not permitted to be, and some other areas.
A Dangerously out of control dog can be defined as a dog that has injured someone
A dog that a person has grounds for reasonable apprehension that it may do so.
Someone as simple as your dog chasing, barking at or jumping up at a person or child could lead to a complaint, so ensure that your dog is under control at all times.
If your dog injures a person, it may be seized by the police and your penalty may include a sentence and or a ban on keeping dogs,
There is also an automatic presumption that your dog will be destroyed unless you can persuade the court that it is not danger to the public in which case it may be subject to a control order.
You may also have to pay a fine, compensation and costs.
The Control of Dogs Order 1992
This mandates that any dog in a public place must wear a collar with the name and address [ including postcode ] of the owner engraved or written on it, or engraved on a tag.
Your telephone number is optional [ but advisable ].
The Kennel Club can provide these tags – log on to the website for further in information.
Breeding and sale of dog [welfare] Act 1999
Breeders who breed five or more litters per year must be licensed by their local authority.
Breeders with fewer litters must also be licensed if they are carrying out a business of breeding dogs for sale.
1. Not mate a bitch less than 12 months old.
2. Not whelp more than six litters from a bitch.
3. Not whelp two litter within a 12 month period from the same bitch.
4. Keep accurate records.
5. Not sell a puppy until it is at least eight weeks of age, other than to a keeper of
A licensed pet shop or Scottish rearing establishment.
The clean Neighbourhood & Environment Act 2005.
Under the clean Neighbourhood & Environment Act 2005, you could be fined up to £1,000 for breaching a dog control order.
Local authorities can now make orders for standard offences including, failing to remove dog faeces, not keeping a dog on a lead and many more.