Did you know that walking your own dog comes with responsibilities and adherence to acts? It is best to be in the know with these things so we have compiled a list for you to browse through:
The Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005
Enables local authorities to implement restrictions, known as dog control orders and you can be fined up to £1,000 if you fail to pick up faeces, fail to keep a dog on a lead or put it on the lead when directed to do so, or allow a dog to enter land from which dogs are excluded.
The Control of Dogs Order 1992
States that any dog in a public place must wear a collar with the name and address of the owner engraved or written upon it, or alternatively on a tag. Your telephone number is optional but advisable. You can be fined up to £5,000 if your dog does not wear an identification tag.
The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991
It is a criminal offence to allow a dog to be “dangerously out of control” in a public place, a place it is not permitted to be and some other areas. This does not mean that your dog is classed as a dangerous breed but can be something as simple as your dog chasing, barking at or jumping up at a person or child. This could lead to complaints or even litigation, so you must make sure your dog is under control at all times. If your dog injures a person, it may be seized or even destroyed by the police and your penalty may even include a prison sentence!
The Road Traffic Act 1988
It is an offence to have a dog on a designated road without it being held on a lead. Local authorities may have similar bye-laws covering public areas – so check the signs! If a dog is injured in a car accident, the driver must stop and give their details to the person in charge of the dog. If there is no person in charge of the dog, the incident must be reported to the police within 24 hours.
If your dog is found to have been the cause of a road traffic accident you may be liable to prosecution under the Animals Act 1971.
Animals Act 1971
You could be liable for damage or injury caused by your dog under this Act and if found guilty you could be ordered to pay thousands of pounds of compensation. It is highly advisable to have third party liability insurance to cover this, something that is included in most pet and some household insurance policies.
Dogs (Protection of Livestock) Act 1953
It is against the law to allow a dog to worry livestock on farmland. If a farmer sees a dog worrying their livestock, they have the right to stop the dog – even if that means shooting it.
Dogs Act 1871
It is an offence if a dog is dangerous and not kept under proper control, which is usually regarded as not on a lead or not muzzled. The law applies wherever an incident happens.