Dangerous Dogs

Dangerous Dogs

What is a Dangerous Dog? 

  • A dog that attacks a person or animal causing serious injury, may be declared dangerous by Council
  • A dog may also be declared dangerous if it is trained or is being trained for attack or guard dog purposes or has previously been declared dangerous by another Council

A declared dangerous dog must be micro-chipped and details of the dog must be given to Council

Once a dog is declared a dangerous dog, the owner must comply with a number of requirements regarding:

  1. Notification of attack, missing dog or ownership change.
  2. The dog is to be kept enclosed indoors on owner's property or in a childproof enclosure (residential);
  3. Warning signs are to be displayed at property entrances;
  4. A distinctive identification collar must be worn;
  5. The dog must be muzzled and kept under effective control, whenever it is outside the premises of the owner;
  6. The dog must also have a microchip implanted and the number provided to Council.

Menacing Dogs

New legislation similar to that applied to dangerous dogs, allows Council to declare dogs as menacing and impose certain conditions.  A dog may be declared as a menacing dog if the dog has rushed at or chased a person or the dog has been declared a menacing dog by another Council.

Dangerous Dog Enclosures

On an owner's residential property the dangerous dog must be kept indoors or in a childproof enclosure constructed according to regulations.

Outdoor enclosures must be fully enclosed and have a weatherproof sleeping area.Enclosures must have a minimum of 10 square metres floor area and be not less than 1.8 metres wide.Walls should be fixed to the floor or be no more than 50mm from the floor

Warning Signs

Dog owners must display warning signs on all entrances of a property where a declared dangerous dog is kept.  Sign specifications are prescribed by legislation.

If your dog injures someone

It is an offence for any person to urge a dog to rush at, bite, attack or chase any person. It is also an offence where a dog, of its own volition, rushes at, bites, attacks or chases any person, or bites or attacks an animal. Dogs that wander at large are subject to impoundment and their owners to prosecution. Any person who is attacked or whose animals are attacked by dogs, should contact Council so that action can be taken, a repeat of the occurrence prevented and the community kept safe.

You are responsible for your dog's actions.  You may be prosecuted and be liable for any damage it causes.  Furthermore, a Court could order the dog's destruction if you are convicted of an offence.

You are required to notify Council if and when:

  • you commence guard or attack training of any dog
  • you move to another municipality with a dog previously declared dangerous
  • the declared dangerous dog attacks or injures a person or animal
  • the declared dangerous dog is missing
  • ownership of the declared dangerous dog changes

Off Premises

When a dog is declared dangerous and is off its owner's premises, it must be muzzled, leashed and wearing an approved 'dangerous dog' collar.

For more information please contact Council's Customer Service on (03) 5722 0888 or email council@wangaratta.vic.gov.au


Last Updated: 07-07-2011

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