Call for change on restricted-breed dogs

Committee calls for change on restricted-breed dogs

The Economy and Infrastructure Committee has made 31 recommendations to improve the regulatory system governing restricted-breed dogs and related matters.

In its detailed report presented to the Victorian Parliament, the Committee said Victoria's current system of identifying and dealing with restricted-breed dogs is not working.

Among its recommendations, the Committee has called for:

  • legislative amendments to allow for the registration of Pit Bulls but retention of other restrictions relating to that breed of dog;
  • ending the requirement for non-racing Greyhounds to be muzzled;
  • an increased focus on policies encouraging people to be responsible pet owners;
  • greater penalties for owners of restricted-breed dogs who do not register their dogs correctly or do not keep them in accordance with requirements;
  • more information sharing about dangerous dogs between agencies, as well as sharing of information between microchip companies and local councils;
  • greater support for local councils, including more flexible options to manage dogs, increased funding and more guidance and training from the state government;
  • improved data collection about dog attacks, including the establishment of a central database of dog registrations and dog attacks; and
  • a taskforce to guide local councils towards a more comprehensive responsible pet ownership approach.

The Committee has recommended that the Victorian Government review the Domestic Animals Act and address the concerns raised by the Committee and others.

“During our inquiry we have tackled a number of complex and emotional issues,” said Committee Chair Joshua Morris.

“We heard differing and conflicting viewpoints and we have sought to be objective and balanced in our findings and recommendations,” he said.

“What is clear is that a change is required to reduce the number of dog attacks and the injuries resulting from them.

“The Government should consider the changes recommended by the Committee and look at implementing those changes as quickly as possible.”

The report is available from the Committee’s website.

Committee calls for change on restricted-breed dogs

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