Tough new laws for dangerous dog owners
Changes in laws governing dangerous dogs will see an increase in fines for dog owners for any dog they are responsible for that is involved in an attack are to be doubled to $20,000 or a two year jail sentence. Dogs that are declared dangerous will be required to be kept on a leash and wear a muzzle at all times when in public areas. In addition to that these dogs will be required to be housed in child proof enclosures on their owners property in a bid to ensure no further accidental attacks on children.
The amendments will be introduced later this year to the 1976 Dog Act, specifically targetting irresponsible dog owners that have little to no control over their dogs.
A dog is identified as dangerous if it shows any tendancy to threaten, attack or repeatedly rush and chases people or other animals.
Specific breeds are being targetted which include the Pit Bull Terrier, Argentinean and Brazilian fighting dogs, Japanese Tosa and Perro de Presa Canario. Owners of these breeds and any other dog that is identified as a dangerous dog will be required to set up protective child safe enclosures and have clear signs displayed about any dangerous dog they may own.
It will be a requirement for any declared dangerous dog breed or individual dog to be sterilised.
According to the WA Government Department of Local Government, there are thousands of reported dog attacks every year and even more not reported. Imprisonment for offences that result in serious harm or death are also being considered as part of the changes to the 1976 Dog Act.
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Original Story: WA Today at http://www.watoday.com.au/wa-news/tough-new-laws-for-dangerous-dog-owners-20120531-1zkfa.html