END Breed Specific Legislation sign now

The legislation was speedily introduced in August 1991 following a spate of highly publicised dog attacks.
Kash was seized on July 3rd 2012 because of a complaint that he looked dangerous

The Dangerous Dogs Act (DDA) 1991 is breed specific legislation (BSL) – Section 1 (1) of the legislation refers to four types of dog:

the Pit Bull Terrier
the Japanese Tosa
the Dogo Argentino
the Fila Braziliero
Under section 1(3) it is illegal to keep any of the above types of dog, unless the dog is registered on the Index of Exempted Dogs and certain conditions of exemption are strictly adhered to.

It is a criminal offence for a dog owner to be in possession or custody of any of the listed dogs, unless a certificate of exemption is in force.

Section 1(2) of the Dangerous Dogs Act prohibits the breeding, sale, exchange, advertising, or gift of any dog listed in section 1(1)-prohibited dogs. It also prohibits these dogs from being in a public place with being muzzled and kept on a lead. Abandoning or allowing to stray is also prohibited under this section of the law.

When the law was originally introduced – dog owners had to fulfil certain requirements within a very short space of time in order to bring their dog within the law. There was a deadline given after which time the Index closed and those dogs not fully exempted became illegal.

There were originally 8,200 dogs notified to the Index of Exempted Dogs, by the end of 1992 a total of only 4,821 dogs were on the register and 'legally held'. This figure had dropped to 2,841 when the Act was amended in 1997.

Only a small number of dogs were added to the Index via court order between 1997 and 2006. But, more rigorous enforcement of the legislation in specific areas (London & Merseyside) has led to 185 dogs being added in 2007 and 331 in 2008.

The Index of Exempted Dogs closed in 1991 - it is not possible for a dog’s owner to take their own steps and register their dog, in order to bring it within the law.

The only way a dog can go on the Register is by Court order.
There is no provision for an owner to make an application to a Court themselves.

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