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‘THIS survey confirms that the Dangerous Dogs Act fails to understand what makes dogs aggressive. Twenty-five years since the adoption of this failed law, it is time for the Government to work with animal welfare charities, dog behaviour experts and the police to identify a fresh and more appropriate approach to the dangerous dogs issues in the UK, and help stop dogs that pose no risk from being put to sleep simply because of their breed.’
So says Clare Horton, chief executive of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, in her foreword to a report published by the charity to mark 25 years since the introduction of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991. The report summarises the findings of a recent survey carried out by the charity to investigate what, in the opinion of canine behaviourists and trainers, were the factors most likely to cause a dog to attack a person. Acknowledging that ‘dangerous dogs do exist of course’, Ms Horton says that many factors make dogs dangerous around people, ‘but breed is not one of them’.
The charity also …