DogCast Radio
Home Episodes Articles Blog Breed profiles Book reviews Photos Contact

New sentences for dangerous dogs offences cautiously welcomed by Battersea

Leading animal charity Battersea Dogs & Cats Home cautiously welcomes today's new Government proposals to increase the maximum penalties for dangerous dog offences.

Under the new proposals dog owners could face a maximum sentence of 14 years imprisonment if a person dies as a result of their dog attacking and five years’ imprisonment if a person is injured by their dog attacking. However Battersea is disappointed that the Government is not going far enough to prevent such offences at an earlier stage.

The penalties are a significant increase from the current maximum limit of two years imprisonment but Battersea believes this still may not provide a strong enough deterrent to the minority of irresponsible owners who allow their dogs to become dangerously out of control.

The charity is calling for more preventative action to tackle those who put children, families and other animals at risk by their inability or unwillingness to control their dogs in the first place.

Nigel Yeo, Battersea's Director of Operations said:
"Battersea supports harsher penalties for irresponsible dog owners. Serious dog attacks can devastate our communities and we must have appropriate sentencing that matches the severity of the crime. However there is still a real need for more early prevention to stop attacks happening in the first place. So we're calling on the Government to take further steps to tackle the owners of dangerous dogs before they ever reach the courts and introduce the right measures that will protect those most vulnerable to attacks."

Battersea wants to see the UK Government adopt Dog Control Notices in the new Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Bill. Such a move would enable Local Authorities to serve a notice on the owners of dogs that are deemed to be out of control. This would mean the owner would have to neuter the dog, muzzle it in public, attend a training course, and keep it on lead. If the owner does not comply with the conditions they would be prosecuted.

Battersea also wants to ensure responsible dog owners are protected in the new legislation, so they are not punished if an incident happened which they took all reasonable steps to prevent.

Nigel Yeo adds: "We recognise that the majority of dog owners are responsible, but sadly it only takes one bad owner to bring about tragic consequences. We must tackle this problem head on and harsher sentencing is just the beginning."


258 - Andrew Cotter Olive and Mabel and celebrating Mutts

Sports broadcaster Andrew Cotter made charming videos of his two Labrador dogs Olive and Mabel, which kept us smiling in lockdown and beyond. He talks to Julie about Dog Days, the book he has written about the ups and downs of life with his dogs, and their rise to social media stardom. Photographer Olivia Pritchard loves mutts - mystery mixed breeds as she puts it - and has created a stunning fine art coffee table book in celebration of them. She talks about her experiences meeting the dogs that feature in the book, and about her own rescue dog.

189 - The Dog Healers and War Dogs Remembered

In this episode you can hear Mark Winik talk about his debut novel, The Dog Healers, and listen to Julia Robertson explain why she founded the charity War Dogs remembered. Plus there's the DogCast Radio News, and what Mischief the German Spitz puppy has been up to.

188 - Service Dogs UK and Roxie the Doxie Finds Her Forever Home

In this episode you can hear about Service Dogs UK, a fantastic charity which trains assistance dogs to support veterans of any service - military personnel, police, firefighters, paramedics and the coastguard - who develop Post Traumatic Stress Disorder due to their job. Also, listen to Dr Jody A Dean, a clinical psychologist talk about how her book, Roxie the Doxie finds her Forever Home, is helping children understand and talk about adoption and other family issues. Plus the DogCast Radio News and some thoughts on the alpha dog myth.

187 - Muffins Halo and Chorley Fun Dog Show

In this episode you can hear about Muffin's Halo for Blind Dogs, and what motivates people to enter their dog in a fun dog show. In the DogCast Radio News, listen to stories about the latest dog related research. Plus there's a new member of the DogCast Radio team!

186 - Maxwell Muir on wolves

In this episode you can hear trainer, behaviourist, writer, broadcaster and wolf expert Maxwell Muir talk about what wolves mean to him personally, their plight in a modern world, and his hopes for their future. Plus we have the DogCast Radio News.