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Tougher legislation on dangerous dogs

Volume 566: debated on Tuesday 16 July 2013

Following the brutal and totally unprovoked attack on the 13-year-old Sunderland schoolgirl Meghan Reynolds, which left her requiring four hours of surgery and 48 stitches to horrific facial wounds, almost 100 of my constituents have signed petitions on this subject, and numerous petitions are still in circulation. I will present those to the House at a later date. I, too, am presenting a petition in identical terms to that of my hon. Friend the Member for Bolton West (Julie Hilling), who has passionately led this campaign and pushed for tougher legislation on dangerous dogs.

The petition states:

The Petition of residents of Washington and Sunderland West,

Declares that seven children and two adults have been killed by dogs since 2006, and that 6,000 admissions to hospital are caused by dog attacks each year leaving many victims scarred for life; notes that the introduction of Dog Control Notices is supported by many organisations including the Kennel Club, the Dogs Trust, RSPCA, Royal College of Nursing, British Veterinary Association and the Communication Workers Union; and believes that the Government’s current proposals on dangerous dogs do not go far enough.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to amend the law to cover attacks on people and animals on both private and public property, to enforce Dog Control Orders, to introduce Dog Control Notices giving the authorities the power to intervene, to introduce the compulsory micro-chipping of all dogs and to promote responsible dog ownership, including training owners and dogs.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.