HC Deb 23 June 1971 vol 819 cc1400-1
6. Mr. Eadie

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he has now completed the joint considerations between himself and the Secretary of State for the Home Department on the existing law in relation to the use of guard dogs.

Mr. Buchanan-Smith

Yes, Sir. There have been only a few minor incidents in Scotland, and my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Home Department intends to announce our joint conclusions tomorrow.

Mr. Eadie

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that his Answer leaves us in some doubt? Would he not agree that there are far too many amateurs, even in Scotland, doing the job of training guard dogs to guard premises, and would he not agree that a guard dog roaming unattended about premises which it is supposed to be guarding cannot distinguish between some malicious intruder and, perhaps, a young child?

Mr. Buchanan-Smith

The hon. Gentleman need not be in doubt much longer. A statement will be made tomorrow. He will appreciate that this is a matter which is the concern of the Home Department as well as of our own, and, indeed, the incident which gave rise to current concern occurred in England. [HON. MEMBERS: "And Scotland."] I accept that there is public concern and worry about this, but we must keep a perspective, and our inquiries in Scotland have revealed so far three minor incidents. However, I assure the House that we do have concern about it, and the hon. Gentleman will hear more about it tomorrow.

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