Health insurance for exempted dogs

We have been in touch with Brookes Braithwaite again regarding their health insurance for exempted dogs.
The premiums now range from £200 to £500 depending on what information is contained on the clients application form. It is worth bearing in mind that this does NOT give you the third party liability insurance that is also needed. This can still be obtained by purchasing a Dogs Trust membership at £25 per year

LEAD Initiative promoting responsible ownership

LEAD (Local Environmental Awareness on Dogs) is an award winning initiative that is recognised as “Best Practice” nationally, and is being used by police forces and local authorities throughout England and Wales; for dealing with nuisance dogs and irresponsible dog owners.

We are happy to inform you that we have also began to receive enquires from Europe, i.e. Netherland National Police Force and the Royal Dutch Association for the Protection of Dogs, with regards to our work.”

You can download the LEAD Initiative leaflet here

Dogs thought to be type and the internet

If you suspect that your dog may be type no amount of posting pictures and inviting opinion on the internet will make things any clearer in fact in all likelihood you will end up more confused than ever (especially when faced with kindly intended but incorrect suggestions that your dog is a Weimaraner cross when you know for a fact your dog has never even seen a weimaraner from across the road let alone been born of one).

A dog cannot be typed definitively from a photograph by anyone, experts included, its not true that the law is simply about the way a dog looks though obviously if the dog does not give the first impression that it resembles a dog of type it isn’t one. The ADBA standard focuses on the ability of a dog to do the job of a fighting dog and any faults it has related to its ability, agility, or stamina will have greater impact on a dogs type that those which are cosmetic only. Photographs can also be deceiving with a dog looking different on practically every one.

It will most likely be suggested if you post online that your dog has been seized, that you set up a support group and start a petition. Petitions are only of use if they are government ones related to the law itself, petitioning for the return of a specific dog to either the police, councils, or to the court are of no use in getting your dog back. The police or council will not release a dog they believe is a banned breed because a petition asks them to.

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Dogs in cars

The issue of transporting dogs in cars crops up on a regular basis.
ALL dogs must be suitably restrained in a vehicle so that it doesn’t distract the driver or injure them if the vehicle stops quickly (UK Highway Code).
However, conditions of exemption state that:
The dog must be muzzled and kept on lead in public places at ALL times, including the car and under the control of a person over the age of sixteen
This means that to follow the letter of the law even if the dog is in a harness attached to a seat belt or in a crate, the dog must still be on a lead and under the control of a person over the age of sixteen if the car they are in, is itself in a public place.

Exempt dogs application form

DNB’s original director, Mel Page, contacted DEFRA regarding the application form for owners of exempted dogs:

I wrote to DEFRA a while ago regarding some concerns I had with the information on the Exempted dogs application form:
Re: Dangerous Dogs Act Section 1. Conditions of Exemption.
After studying the DEFRA application for certificate of exemption and a further telephone call to the Dogs Index, I am seeking answers to the following questions:

  • Where in the Act does it state that a person must be aged 18 or over to own an exempted dog?
  • The Act states that an exempted dog must be controlled by a person aged 16 or over thereby implying that a person must be 16 or over to own such a dog. Page 2 of your form, the ‘Declaration’ states ‘I am over 18 years of age’ which implies that a person under the age of 18 may not own such a dog. The form also states that a person must be over 18 to obtain appropriate third party liability insurance. This is incorrect. Dogs Trust accept members from the age of 16 and as you will be aware provide appropriate third party liability insurance as part of their membership scheme.
  • Where in the Act does it stipulate the length of lead that an exempted dog must be walked on?
  • Your form states that the length of lead must be less than 2 metres, yet the Act states that an exempted dog must be held securely on a fixed lead. There is no mention of length as far as I can determine.
  • I am unable to find any reference to the size of tattoo in the Act, although I am aware of a Home Office Circular stating that the letters and numbers should be at least 10mm in height. I wonder if you could tell me where in the Act there is any mention of the required sizes for tattoos for exempted dogs?

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Exemption changes

We are sure there will be other points that spring to mind as we digest the information

There is still the 2 months time limit on contingency orders in order to comply with the rules of exemption however it is now clearly stated that the dog will no longer be exempt if the requirements attached to the certificate of exemption are not complied with at any time after the certificate is issued, clarifying that breach of conditions will make your dog illegal again.

Tattooing has been removed from the conditions and replaced with microchipping. And you now have to provide access to the dog for the purpose of reading a microchip on request by a person specified in section 5(1)

It is now clarified that you now have five days to produce confirmation of insurance when requested to do so which matches the five days to produce already given to produce the certificate of exemption.

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