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Bristol City council proposes dog control orders

KC Dog, the Kennel Club scheme in place to help all dog owners protect their rights and freedoms, was recently alerted by Bristol City Council of their intention to bring in dog control orders. The worry for Bristol dog owners is that it is unclear whereabouts dogs will be legally required to be kept on leads.

Concerned for the rights and freedoms of dog owners, and the impact on the welfare of local dogs with the suggested restrictions, KC Dog urges local residents to contact Richard Bevan at Bristol City Council before the end of the consultation period, which finishes this week on the 23rd March, to see exactly where they would be required to keep their dogs on leads. Mr Bevan can be contacted on 0117 977 6004 or via dog.warden@bristol.gov.uk

Local authorities have had the ability to use increased powers over dog owners all over the UK since the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act came into force in April 2006.

Dog Control Orders may be used to clamp down on dog owners, and can adversely affect their rights and freedoms. Using the orders, councils can enforce such things as residents keeping their dogs on leads, banning dogs from certain areas, and restricting the number of dogs that a person may walk at any one time.

Prior to being able to enforce dog control orders, local authorities must consult members of the public, giving a period of consultation. However, this only stipulates that an advert must be placed in the local paper, which means a lot of people will be unaware of the proposals.

KC Dog provides a central point, with a useful, up-to-date web page www.thekennelclub.org.uk/item/244, which informs dog owners and increases awareness of local dog control orders being proposed and consultation periods.

KC Dog advises on how to respond to these consultations, helping responsible dog owners to have their input before the orders are in place and it is too late.

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary said; “KC Dog is an information network whose members benefit from current news on dog control orders, and receive guidance from the Kennel Club. All dog owners are urged to join KC Dog, and be a part of this network by acting as ours eyes and ears. Defra and Animal Welfare Minister Ben Bradshaw MP have given their full support to the scheme.”

On joining KC Dog, owners receive a welcome pack which includes a number of guideline templates to help get started and influence public policy. To join, or for further information please contact Laura Vallance on laura.vallance@thekennelclub.org.uk / 020 7518 1020.