Kennel Club Attends Scottish Government’s Responsible Dog Ownership Summit

The Kennel Club gave its views on dog control and what more can be done to protect communities and encourage responsible dog ownership, at an event held by the Scottish Government in Edinburgh last week.

The Responsible Dog Ownership Summit was announced by First Minister Alex Salmond last year after meeting the families of victims of dog attacks, and was hosted by Justice Secretary, Kenny MacAskill and Rural Affairs Secretary, Richard Lochhead, of the Scottish Government.

Attendees of the summit included the Kennel Club, Dogs Trust, SSPCA, Police Scotland, the British Veterinary Association, the National Farmers Union Scotland, the Communication and General Workers Union, and a large representation of local councils and Members of the Scottish Parliament including Christine Grahame, Paul Martin, Dennis Robertson and Nanette Milne.

The summit touched on many of the issues raised in the Scottish Government's recent 'Promoting responsible dog ownership in Scotland: microchipping and other measures' consultation, including dog control, licensing, compulsory microchipping and the enforcement of the Control of Dogs (Scotland) Act.  Encouragingly, at the time of the event, the government had already received approximately 2,000 responses to the consultation, indicating the issue is one that the Scottish public finds important.

Speaking on recent proposals to introduce compulsory microchipping in Scotland, the Kennel Club highlighted the importance of a legislative requirement within any regulations to keep information up to date as well as minimum standards for databases, implanter training and the microchips themselves. The Kennel Club also pledged its commitment to compulsory microchipping regulations by offering help in the education of such measures to the wider public, as it has done in England and Wales.

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary, commented: "With over 600,000 dogs in Scotland, it is important that all those concerned with them work together to promote responsible ownership.  We therefore commend the Scottish Government for holding this event to share ideas on how to tackle current issues relating to dog control and new measures that can be introduced to improve matters.

"We also expressed our views in the recent consultation which we hope will result in fair legislation which positively impacts on dogs and owners and their significant role within society."

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