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WHY is it vital to train our dogs, be they pups or pensioners.............

The importance of socialisation and good training of all dogs is crucial in today’s ‘anti-dog’ society. Too often, so many owners wait until a problem escalates before they do anything about it, instead of acting at the first sign of a problem, especially with pups and young dogs. It’s a case of what’s cute and funny as pups, is not so funny and a lot harder to undo with an older dog. Training is for life, as is socialisation; it’s no good thinking, “Well they have learnt that now”, without reinforcing it on a regular basis. Ask anyone involved in welfare and rescue of dogs, and the majority will tell you, the amount of dogs they see coming through their hands with no, or little training is staggering, and yet with proper training and socialisation in the beginning, many of these dogs would not be in the system. So remember it’s not just keeping them warm, fed and loved – YOU owe it to YOUR dog to train and socialise it, to give it a balanced and happy long life. Then, and only then, can you call yourself a responsible and caring dog owner.

Control of Dogs (Scotland) Act
This new Act has now been given royal assent and came into force in Scotland in February 2011. It is to replace the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991. The major change is that the Act will emphasise 'deed not breed'.

 Below is a short summary of the Act.

The Act puts all the responsibility of controlling dogs squarely on the owner. Sometimes, that responsibility will rest on the person in charge if it's not clear who the owner is. For instance that may be a dog walker or family member who is walking the dog on behalf of the owner. However, if that person is under 16 years old, then whomever has parental responsibilty will be liable for the control of the dog even if they are not present at the time.
So, what does 'out of control mean'? It will vary in intensity from a dog which has no recall and charges up to other dogs or people to actually being in attack mode. The local authority can impose measures on the owner, or person in charge, where the person has failed to keep the dog under control.
If your dog rushes up to someone and won't come back when called, you may receive a Control Notice and this can be done without application to the courts. This will last for a period of time giving you the chance to properly train your dog. If you don't do that, then further measures will come into force as you will be in breach of that Notice. Your dog may have to be microchipped, your details will be put on a database, you may be instructed by the court to attend training classes and you may then have a criminal conviction. It does NOT need a dog warden or authorised person to witness the incident. It may be that you have been reported by someone who did.
You must have control of all the dogs you own as each dog will be treated separately. So, if you have a few dogs out of control, the least you will receive is a Control Notice for each dog.
.Contrary to the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991, this new Act covers dogs not under control in private places as well as in public which means your home and garden or someone else's home/garden.

The worst case scenario is that there may be a destruction order for your dog. You may be heavily fined. You may not be allowed to keep any animals in the future. You may be imprisoned.
Full details of the whole Act can be found by following the link below

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