The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991, bans the ownership, breeding, sale (both national and international) and exchange of certain types of fighting dogs - the ban currently covers pure breeds and cross breeds with the same physical and behavioural characteristics as the Pit Bull Terrier, Japanese Tosa, Dogo Argentino and Fila Braziliero.

Did you know the maximum fine for having a banned dog is £5000 and/or 6 months in prison and the dog may be destroyed?

Section 3 of the act applies to all dogs that are dangerously out of control in a public place (it does not apply to dogs in their own garden who jump up at visitors). If a dog acts in a way in which someone fears they will be attacked, then an offence is committed. The fines are up to £5000 and/or 6 months in prison and the Courts may order the dog to be destroyed.

A Police Officer or dog warden may seize a banned dog or a dog that is dangerously out of control. If you wish to report a dangerous dog, contact the Police or the dog wardens . The Courts can also issue a warrant for the police to enter a building and seize a dog.

Control of Dogs Act Scotland

Information from Endangered Dogs Defence & Rescue Ltd. Click here to visit the site.

The Control of Dogs (Scotland) Act 2010 has now been approved by the Scottish Parliament (being passed by parliament on 22nd April 2010) and received Royal Assent on 26th May 2010 - the provisions of the Act come into force at the end of nine months from this date.

The new law will affect dog owners and their dogs in two major ways:

1) Firstly section three of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 (DDA) which applies to ALL dog regardless to breed or type will be different in Scotland. This new law extends the criminal liability of a person where a dog is dangerously out of control under section 3 of the 1991 Act to all places.

2) Secondly the introduction of the 'Dog Control Notice' (DCN) which can be imposed on the dog's owner, or the person in charge of a dog if that person has failed to keep the dog under control. Failure to comply with a DCN could lead to a fine and/or destruction of the dog if ordered by the court.

This law will be applied in Scotland (not England and Wales).

The new measures "to modernise the law on dangerous dogs" were originally introduced by Alex Neil MSP (Member of the Scottish Parliament) who produced a consultation document in January 2008 and asked for public written responses regarding his proposals to be sent in by 14th April 2008.

The Control of Dogs Scotland Bill was later taken up by Christine Grahame MSP. The original Bill did contain a reference to a dog's 'size and power' when considering whether it is out of control for the purposes of issuing a dog control notice; an amendment was later tabled by Patricia Ferguson MSP to remove this reference in the proposed law.

The amendment was debated in the Scottish Parliament on the 22nd April 2010 and was passed by 57 to 42 votes (Christine Grahame MSP voted against the amendment) and the Bill went forward to become an Act - a law.

Dogs and the Law

Dog mess is unpleasant and can spread diseases which can cause illness and even blindness.

Under the Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act 1996 a person who is in charge of a dog must clean up after it when it fouls any footpath, highway, verge or other open space to which the public have access.

The law does not apply to:

  • Guide dogs
  • Land used for agriculture or woodlands
  • Land which is mainly marshland, moor or heath
  • Rural common land
  • Land comprised of, or running alongside a road with a speed limit over 40 miles per hour

Uniformed wardens and dog wardens regularly patrol parks and other places used for dog walking and can issue fixed penalty notices of £50 to anyone found committing an offence. The case could even be taken to Court where a fine of up £1000 can be given. You can report a dog fouling offence your dog warden.


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