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Chile enacts BSL

CHILE HAS become the latest country to enact Breed Specific Legislation, drawing quite unashamedly on the ‘good examples’ set by France, Germany, Spain, Canada, certain US states and others including the UK.

The South American nation has all but banned ‘the usual suspects’ – American Pit Bull Terriers and American Staffordshire Terriers, as well as the Japanese Tosa Inu, Dogo Argentino, Rottweiler, Dobermann, Neapolitan Mastiff, Presa Canario, Bullmastiff, Fila Brasileiro, and Dogue de Bordeaux.

It is interesting to note that two Latin American breeds were included in the List, whereas usually the Fila Brasileiro and Dogo Argentino are prized as pets and show animals in South America.

As with the Dangerous Dogs Act and similar Breed Specific laws, the above named breeds are now banned from being bred, sold or imported into Chile. Existing specimens will be neutered and registered. Whilst being walked in public, dogs of these breeds must be leashed and muzzled and may only be under the control of a person aged 16 years or over.

As with BSL in other countries, the Chilean Government enacted the new laws after a spate of dog attacks which garnered a great deal of media attention, resulting in the usual ‘knee-jerk, quick fix’ reaction of the Government in bringing in the draconian laws.

Poul Poulson of the Washington Animal Foundation which fights BSL worldwide commented: "Yet another country bows down to BSL, without a shred of scientific evidence that any of the breeds listed are inherently dangerous. It’s a very sad day for dogs and their owners in Chile."