Sunday, 16 December 2012

New Dog Law for Wales:

Public Consultation – Control of Dogs (Wales) Bill

This public consultation began on the 23/11/2012 and closes on the 01/03/2013.

Your opinions are being sought in a public consultation which is asking for your views on a proposed Bill - the ‘Control of Dogs (Wales) Bill.

The welsh Assembly plan to introduce the proposed Bill in Spring 2013 and if the Bill was passed by the Welsh Assembly, the legislation which includes changes in current law would apply Wales.

The proposals include:
- The introduction of ‘dog control notices’ (DCNs).

- The extension of Section three (which applies to all breeds/types of dog) of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 to cover any place (i.e. inside your home) whether or not a public place in Wales.

- The extension of Section Three, aggravated and non-aggravated, of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 which currently applies to a person and under the proposed changes would be extended to also apply to - all protected animals (protected animals are defined under the Animal Welfare Act and include dogs and cats).
For example; your dog chasing a cat in your garden could become a criminal offence in Wales, as could your dog defending your home from a burglar – there are no defences given in the draft Bill.
- An amendment to Section one (4A) offences and section 4b applications (DDA 1991, as amended)
There are also changes proposed on the draft Bill relating to those found guilty of being a prohibited type - the breed specific element of the DDA legislation – currently the court can order a dog is exempted once satisfied that the dog would not ‘constitute a danger to public safety’ – the Welsh Bill seeks to amend this – the court would also need to be satisfied the dog would not constitute a danger to the safety of protected animals (for example other dogs and cats).

If the court is unable to order exemption the only other alternative is a death sentence and this is based largely on how a dog looks –its physical appearance.
It is a dismal state of affairs that the Welsh government do not propose to scrap flawed BSl altogether and lead the way out of the dark ages, but no, they intend to make exemption more difficult which as it stands will result in the deaths of even more innocent family companions and there are also plans to increase the exemption fee-payable to the Index of Exempted Dogs which is run by Defra.

The full details of the consultation are available online here

To download your consultation explanation and questions go here

To read the draft Bill which is proposed and will affect dogs and their owners in Wales can be found here

How to respond:

Please submit your comments by 01 March 2013, in any of the following ways:


Animal Welfare Team
Environment and Sustainable Development Department
Welsh Government
Cathays Park
Cardiff CF10 3NQ

New Dog Law