Irresponsible dog owners who allow their dog to attack people will face tougher prison sentences.
Changes to the Dangerous Dogs Act, which came into force in May, will also mean dog owners can now face prosecution if their dog attacks a person in their home or on any private property, except if they attack a trespasser.
In order to encourage responsible ownership and tackle the issue of “dangerous dogs”, three dog surgeries are being held this week.
They will be held between noon and 8 pm in Blackburn tomorrow (July 23rd), Blackpool on Thursday and Preston on Friday.
Members of the public who have concerns about whether or not they own a banned breed are being asked to book an appointment and bring their dog along where specialist dog handlers and dog identification officers will be on hand to assess their dog and decide if further action is required.
The events are to educate the public about the recent changes in dog legislation and to provide help and advice to dog owners who have questions or concerns about the breed of their dog, and identify any dogs that are prohibited under the Dangerous Dogs Act.
All owners are being reassured that they will be treated professionally and sensitively.
Insp. Mark Baines said: “We know there are dogs out there that pose a risk to the community and even to their owners.
“Any dog breed has the potential to be dangerous, especially around very small children. Sadly, this is evident by the number of dog bite incidents that get reported both to us and other forces on a regular basis, some with tragic consequences.
“We understand that it may be a very difficult decision for pet owners to come forward but we would urge anybody that owns a dog and has any concerns about its breed to bring it along in order to comply with the legislation.”
Surgeries will be held at:
• Blackburn Police Station, Greenbank Business Park off Whitebirk Drive Blackburn, BB1 3HT
• Blackpool Police Station, Bonny Street,FY1 5RL.
• Preston Operations Centre, Lancaster Road North, Preston PR1 2SA.