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Solicitor calls for ‘akita’ ban

A Welsh solicitor has called on the Government to ban ‘akita types’ , after claiming that the dogs have a tendency towards violence, particularly towards young people.

Michael Imperato, who is representing a family in a case against an Akita owner, questioned whether akitas were appropriate animals to be kept as pets. Mr Imperato, a partner at Cardiff law firm Russell Jones and Walker, who specialises in accident and injury, said, ‘Is there any need for people to own a dog which can bring down a bear in the Japanese forests? I'd have to question whether there's any need for that in this country. You would have to look into whether the dangers associated with owning the dogs outweighed the freedom of people to do what they want, and perhaps this recent spate means that balance is going against that freedom.

‘The question that occurs to me is, does anyone really need a dog that has been specifically bred and trained to kill a bear?

‘I don't know why someone would want a bear-hunting dog and I feel strongly that the Government should add them to the list of banned breeds.

Mr Imperato also repeated his call for the legal loopholes which currently mean even those who attack children are not necessarily destroyed.

The owners of the animal in this particular case are not obliged to put it down because the incident occurred on private property.

Mr Imperato added, ‘The Dangerous Dogs Act specifies a couple of breeds, but that might not cover all dangerous dogs.The other thing, and this is what this case highlights, is that if an attack happens in a public place, for instance a friend's house, or you're walking up a driveway to post a letter and you're attacked, there are no restrictions on the dog.’