New Australian Law Deadly for Pit Bulls


A new law was implemented in Victoria, Australia last week that will lead to the seizure and killing of any dog fitting the criteria for an unregistered restricted breed found after the law goes into effect.

Targeted breeds include the American pit bull terrier, perro de presa canario, dogo Argentino, Japanese tosa and fila Brasileiro. Anyone with a look-alike will need will need to show papers or a certificate from a veterinarian as proof.

In addition to registering their dogs, owners will have to prove that their dogs are spayed/neutered, microchipped, kept in an inescapable enclosure, muzzled and leashed off of their property and accompanied by someone at least 17 years old. Owners may also be fined up to $4,885 if they lose control of their dog and $2,442 if their dog escapes, or they move without notifying authorities, according to the AP.

The new law was spurred by recent attacks but has many worried, including the Australian Services Union, that targeting specific breeds will not only be ineffective in preventing attacks, but will also increase the risks to those who are responsible for identifying, seizing and destroying the dogs.

Others, including the union, raised concerns about the legal issues that could arise if a dog was misidentified and destroyed. Take this neat little test to see if you can pick the pit bull.

The Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) also spoke out against the legislation, with a “ban the deed, not the breed,” stance.

“Our thoughts go out to anyone who has suffered from a dog attack, and the death of a child is particularly distressing,” said Dr Susan Maastricht, Victorian President of the AVA.

“The AVA believes the legislation proposed in Victoria is not a long term solution. The risk is this could lull the community into a false sense of security and do little to address the overall problem of dog bites. We are very concerned that innocent families and family pets will become scapegoats when they’ve done nothing wrong.”

While this new law is only in Victoria, expansion may be supported by other officials.

Related Stories:

Why I Will Never Support Breed Bans

Study Shows Pit Bull Ban Does Not Stop Dog Bites

Fixing the Pit Bull Problem by Embracing the Breed

Photo credit: .melanie via flickr

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Past Member
.6 months ago

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Tanya Selth
Tanya Selth1 years ago

" Studies have already proven that pit bulls DO NOT BITE any more often than any other dog breed. "

True but a bite from a pit bull can do far more damage then a bite from a little dog. So I can see how they can be seen as being more dangerous then some other of the dog breeds.

"In addition to registering their dogs, owners will have to prove that their dogs are spayed/neutered, microchipped, "

I personally think that should be going with ALL DOGS, If people knew they had to desex and microchip a dog if they were going to get one, people who were going to be irresponsible and going to do these things probably wouldnt then get a dog in the first place.

There are far too many unwanted dogs out there. No dog should be being born unwanted.

Lea Faulks
Lea Faulks1 years ago

Why is it that dumb people get to have so much power over things they know nothing about! This new law in Australia is yet another example of people's ignorance and their wielding of power to the detriment of both people and animals. Where is good sense? Where is humanity?

barbara kelly
Barbara kelly1 years ago

This really pisses me off.

Past Member
Past Member 1 years ago

Studies have already proven that pit bulls DO NOT BITE any more often than any other dog breed. This is just stupid. As usual the easy way out - let's not go after the stupid owners who don't socialize and take care of whatever dog breed they have. Let's go after the owns who have been the victims of media hype. Live strong Lennox! The rest of us remember the results of BSL and the onslaught from the populace media response. We are watching.



Jack S.
Jack S.2 years ago

this makes me sick we should be registering the dogs to an adult and if the dog commits a crime the owner should face the wrath of the law that would stop morons from getting the dog for the image and make them learn how to rase a well balanced dog as my hero Cesar Millan say "beware of the owner" simple as that

Duane B.
.2 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

Georgia A.
Georgia a.3 years ago

I took the test listed in the article to find the pit bull. After eight failures, I gave up. I guess they had better not hire me, not that they could, to find the pit bulls in Australia. What a dumb, stupid, asinine law. Blaming any and all dogs for the antics of one poorly trained or mistreated or abused dog. Shame on them.

Manuela B.
Manuela B.3 years ago

My friend had a pitbull cross and she was the most beautiful loving dog. There is good and bad in all breads of animals and humans....