Breed Specific Legislation – Part 1

This is from the final Course Assessment of my ISCP Diploma in Canine Psychology/Behaviour. I just have to complete my final Thesis, which by the time you read these posts, I will hopefully have completed and submitted. And who knows, I might have even passed and been awarded the Diploma?!

The Question:

Go to or the relevant dog law websites in your country and read through the legal links. Write an essay of between 500 and 1,000 words on how these laws affect dog owners in your area. Conclude with your personal opinion on Breed Specific Legislation, and the reasons for your opinion.


My Answer:

For this question, I will answer in some places by quoting references from various websites. There is a plethora of information about breed specific legislation around the world, some more accurate than others. For this question, I shall concentrate only on UK and Australian law.

Here’s a breakdown on breed-specific legislation of each different state in Australia:

State Yes/No Details of conditions and any associated laws
NSW Yes Section 55 of the Companion Animals Act 1988 contains restrictions for the prescribed breeds (see above)

The owners of restricted dogs must comply with the following requirements:

  • The dog must be kept in a child proof enclosure.
  • The dog cannot be in the sole charge of a person under the age of 18 years.
  • One or more signs “ Warning Dangerous Dogs” must be displayed on the boundaries of the property
  • When the dog is away from its normal property it must be under the effective control of a competent person
  • The dog cannot be sold to a person less than 18 years of age
  • The dog owner must notify the Local Council of the following matters
    • That the dog has attacked or injured a person or animal (within 24 hours)
    • That the dog cannot be found (within 24 hours)
    • That the dog has died (as soon as possible)
    • That the dog’s ownership has changed (within 24 hours)
    • That the dog is no longer being ordinarily kept in the area of the council (as soon as possible)
    • That the dog is being ordinarily kept at a different location in the area of the council (as soon as possible)
QLD Yes Restrictions for the prescribed breeds (see above)
SA Yes Restrictions for the prescribed breeds (see above), must be desexed, muzzled in public, not allowed to be sold or given away
TAS No Restrictions for the prescribed breeds (see above) under Dog Control Act 2000
VIC Yes Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956 of the Commonwealth – restricted breed dog

Domestic (Feral & Nuisance) Animals Act 1994: Section 7: Exemptions for Guide Dogs Section 27: Restraint of greyhounds. Section 41G/L: Restraint of restricted breed dogs when on owners premises

Also specific regulations (Catchment & Land Protection Act 1994) regarding keeping of dingoes

WA Yes Federal import ban – Dog Act for dangerous dogs

The following is from the Australian Veterinary Association’s website


CONTINUED TOMORROW IN PART 2:  Breed-specific legislation


(Image Source: Google Images)

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