Opinion: Time to change laws on dog attacks

It's time to change the law on dangerous dogs, says Neil
It's time to change the law on dangerous dogs, says Neil

It has been said before, and it will no doubt be said again, but sometimes the law really is an ass.

If a vicious dog attacks a person its owner can be hauled in front of the courts and fined, banned from keeping animals or even, in extreme cases, sent to prison.

The courts can also order the animal in question to be destroyed if they choose.

And there have been plenty of examples of this across our county and beyond.

Yet should the same dog attack another animal, perhaps even killing it, then the authorities repeatedly tell us there is nothing they can do.
The police say that no crime has been committed and local authorities say they have no power to act.

This is astonishing in a country where we have an organisation – the RSPCA – dedicated to preventing cruelty to animals.

It is reasonable to assume that a dog which attacks another pet is an aggressive beast which could go on to attack a person if not kept under control by its owner.

Why, then, is there no mechanism for action to be taken to prevent such subsequent attacks?

The nation rightly throws up its collective hands in horror when dozens of dogs are killed in a suspected arson attack, yet every day pets are being mauled and even killed by bigger and more powerful animals, yet nothing is done.

It is time that this changed.

Neil Pickford, Editor