According to a report in last weekend's Mail on Sunday, documents leaked from Defra have revealed proposals for a range of measures designed to reduce the risk from dangerous dogs.

The proposals reportedly include:

  • All owners required to take a 'competency test' to prove they can handle their dog. The cost of the test has been estimated at £60.
  • All owners required to buy third party insurance.
  • All owners required to microchip their pet

The first of these looks like being a bit of a non-runner. Aside from the subjective nature of deciding what makes a competent owner, the cost is disproportionate to the size of the problem: 703 convictions for dangerously out of control dogs in 2007. The other two seem long overdue.

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