Dog attack powers ‘not being used’ – BBC News

Image copyright PA
Image caption The particular increased powers to deal with dog episodes were introduced in 2014

Power introduced to curb dog assaults are not being used by the authorities, the Freedom of Information request by the Victoria Derbyshire show suggests.

Some 77% of the 311 councils in England, Scotland and Wales that responded had not issued any kind of Community Protection Notices (CPN), which usually demand owners take steps to prevent assaults.

Hospital admissions through dog attacks have risen simply by 21% over five years.

The Local Government Organization said notices were only one manage method.

The particular CPNs, also known as Dogbos, were released in 2014 to give police plus local authorities more powers to requirement irresponsible dog owners took steps to manage their animals’ behaviour and prevent episodes before they occurred.

The orders are usually issued to cope with minor incidents, such as when a canine has shown it is capable of aggression. They will order the responsible person to prevent doing something, such as letting your dog into children’s play areas, or even take action such as ensuring their family pet is muzzled.

Injuries rising

Only 43 out of the 311 local authorities who responded to the Freedom info request have issued the purchases, handing out at least 127 in total. Twenty-seven said the orders were not accessible or not applicable and two declined to issue them on the grounds of period taken. Some 87 councils failed to respond.

Fewer than half the police forces we contacted can state whether they had issued any kind of CPNs. Of the 18 forces that will did give us information, just four said they had issued a single.

Figures through NHS England show that within 2011-2013 there were 6, 317 admissions for dog bites or accidental injuries, rising to a record high of seven, 673 in 2015-2016, an increase associated with 21. 47%.

Nearly a quarter of these (24%) were kids.

‘I was shouting and screaming for help’

Image copyright Sandra McEvitt
Image caption Ellie has been left with skin damage after the attack in May

Sandra McKevitt’s relative Ella, three, was mauled simply by five XL American bulldogs that broke through a fence in the girl garden in Liverpool in May.

“One dog little bit her on the leg, then one around the shoulder and you could see the bloodstream pouring, they just wouldn’t depart her alone.

“One of my neighbours jumped as well as started banging and shouting in order to distract them and it worked.

“One dog had the girl by the jaw at one stage and I was banging on his mind. I tried to open his chin and she fell out and they had been all jumping on her.

“The paramedic who came had been off work sick with surprise afterwards.

“An air ambulance took her in order to hospital and she endured seven hrs of theatre. She still needs to go back and may need surgery on her behalf scars. She’s having to see a psychiatrist and psychiatrist.

“There were my neighbour’s canines, you could hear them barking. He or she was breeding them and offering the puppies for 5, 500 each. I was shocked to find out they will weren’t classified as dangerous canines.

“They were all of destroyed and the puppies given to a creature charity. He’s in prison pertaining to 18 months. I don’t think it’s lengthy enough. ”

In the past five years there is a 37% drop in both the amount of cases against owners, falling through 805 to 511, and the variety of convictions, from 593 to 374, figures from the Ministry of Proper rights show.

But our own research found there was some dilemma over whose responsibility it was in order to issue the orders.

Some councils, including Merseyside and Mid Suffolk, said it had been down to the police, while others worked within tandem with forces.

Others, like North Devon, said they informed police after they were issued.

‘Awareness important’

Bill Lambert, from the Kennel Membership, said it was disappointing the laws was not being used more, as in most all cases whenever a bite occurred, the canines had been brought to the notice from the authority beforehand.

“Harsh penalties after the event do not avoid it happening, ” he stated.

“The local expert might find it a difficult issue to deal with and we want the local authorities as well as the police to work together. It’s not existed that long yet and awareness is essential. They are tools that can be used. ”

The Local Government Association stated CPNs were usually issued carrying out a written warning, and the possibility of a single was an effective way of changing behaviour in some instances.

Improved local community engagement, orders controlling behaviour in public areas spaces – such as ensuring canines are kept on leads in certain locations – and civil injunctions double.

A speaker said: “Crime and anti-social conduct varies from place to place and that is why local authorities, who know their areas greatest, are responding in different ways making use of different tools and approaches. inch

A spokesman for your Department for Environment, Food and Non-urban Affairs (Defra) said the Harmful Dogs Act gave police plus local authorities power to intervene early along with owners.

Watch the Victoria Derbyshire program on weekdays between 09: 00 and eleven: 00 on BBC Two as well as the BBC News Channel.