HC Deb 02 July 1986 vol 100 cc1005-6
37. Mr. Kirkwood

asked the Solicitor-General for Scotland how many prosecutions were taken against individuals for offences relating to control of dogs for the last five years for which figures are available.

The Solicitor-General for Scotland

The total numbers of persons prosecuted for such offences, including the failure to pay dog licences are: 1981, 660; 1982, 701; 1983, 597; 1984, 553; 1985, 484.

I will, with permission, Mr. Speaker, circulate a breakdown of these figures in the Official Report

Mr. Kirkwood

That answer is very helpful. Is the Solicitor-General aware that there is concern that perhaps more could be done to try to control and limit the number of dog control offences that are being committed? Will he give us an assurance that he will consult his colleagues south of the border to ensure that the imminent Government proposal to abolish the dog licence will be considered carefully to ascertain what authority and powers local authorities will have to control dogs in future?

The Solicitor-General for Scotland

It is not for me to consider whether dog licences should be retained or abolished. The hon. Gentleman will appreciate that there is a wide range of offences already in Scotland relating to the regulation of dogs. In the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982, further provision was made to avoid what can be the unpleasant nuisance that is caused by those who are irresponsible in their ownership of dogs, and not so much by the dogs themselves.

Following are the figures:

Offence 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985
Cruelty to dogs 31 25 38 29 21
Failure to pay dog licence 255 251 203 147 145
Protection of livestock from dogs 136 163 157 130 131
Guard Dogs Act 1975 20 21 17 13 11
Other offences involving dogs 218 241 182 234 176

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