Tougher sentencing for dangerous dog owners not enough says Blue Cross15 May 2012
Tougher sentencing for owners of dangerously out of control dogs will not be enough to prevent attacks, according to Blue Cross.
New guidelines for judges revealed today include prison sentences of up to 18 months for owners of dogs that harm others in a public place.
It’s hoped that this will see more offenders jailed, more given community orders and fewer being discharged.
Courts will also be encouraged to ban irresponsible owners who put the public at risk from keeping dogs and to put down genuinely dangerous dogs.
Blue Cross director of external affairs, Steve Goody, says: “Blue Cross welcomes a tougher approach to the prosecution of irresponsible dog owners but tougher sentencing alone is not enough to prevent dog attacks occurring.
“The campaign to reform the current Dangerous Dogs Act has been dragging on for some twenty years now. We feel that there is an urgent need for preventative action or dog attacks will continue to increase.”
Steve adds: “We believe the introduction of useful, practical measures could be used specifically to target irresponsible dog owners before an attack happens.
“An improvement contract of this kind would leave an irresponsible owner in no doubt about the unacceptability of their behaviour and the necessary steps they must take to control of their dog.”
Find out more about the Dangerous Dogs Act and why it’s failed to protect the public.