Legislation On Dangerous Animals 'Should Be Improved'
Dog bite specialists at Irwin Mitchell have welcomed new calls from a Labour MP for more to be done to protect people of all ages from the threats posed by dangerous dogs.
Luciana Berger has called for the Government to revamp legislation in place to improve the powers that police have to act quickly to take preventative action to prevent dog attacks, including allowing officers to take action on private property.
Other proposals put forward include the introduction of compulsory micro-chipping to improve the identification of dogs and also the ability to trace their owners. Dog control notices should also be produced when necessary.
Ms Berger’s calls, part of a BBC Newsnight investigation, have come after a spate of serious incidents in recent years when people of all ages have been seriously or fatally injured by dogs, both in public places and on private property.
Irwin Mitchell acts for numerous victims of serious dog attacks, as well as the families of those injured or killed in such incidents, and has campaigned for years for more to be done to protect people from potential harm.
Louise Scott, a Birmingham-based solicitor who specialises in dog bite claims, said: “Time and time again we are approached by people who have suffered serious physical and psychological trauma as a result of attacks by dogs – which clearly highlights that legislation in place does not do enough to keep people safe.
“The introduction of better means of identification could play a huge role in reducing the number of dog attacks and, in cases where people are sadly hurt, ensuring that owners are properly held to account for failing to keep their dogs under control.
“Another issue we also feel deserves attention is the introduction of compulsory insurance, which will also help people gain justice over the ordeals they face.
“This issue is simply not going away and the government cannot ignore it. Proposals are expected in the next few weeks and they cannot come soon enough.”