New guidelines allow courts to use full power against irresponsible owners

Tuesday, 21st August 2012

People who own dangerous dogs could now face up to 18 months in prison under new guidelines laid out by the government.

The Sentencing Council's new guidelines allow courts to use their full power when it comes to dealing with irresponsible owners.

Commenting on the new rules, the Kennel Club welcomed the move, but said it is concerned that these measures will not fully protect the public from dangerous dogs.

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club communications director, said: "These guidelines go a long way in sending out the message that irresponsible ownership will not be tolerated and will help the courts hold bad owners to account.

"However, the Kennel Club still has concerns that these measures do not address the real issue, which is the urgent need for genuinely preventative measures."

She added that there needs to be ways to reduce dog bite incidents in the first place through education and resources, so police and authorities can deal with signs of irresponsible owners in the first place.