His Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar introduced the Dangerous Dog Act on the 7th May 2003 following the numerous reports of dog attacks reported in the United Kingdom’s press and on suspicion that some of these dogs were being used for dog fighting locally.
The concept of the legislation was to prohibit the importation of the breed of dogs known as Pitbull Terriers, American Bulldog, American Staffordshire, Japanese Tosa, Dogo Argentino, or Fila Braziliero or dogs appearing to be a cross breed of or substantially of one of these types.
Persons who owned these dogs before the legislation came into force had five months to permanently export, destroy or seek an exemption under the Act. the granting of an exemption was subject to satisfying the following requirements stipulated in the Act:
- Evidence as to the owners’ suitability as the custodian of the dog.
- A certificate from a Veterinary Surgeon as to the nature of the dog.
- A certificate from a Veterinary Surgeon certifying that the dog has been neutered.
- Evidence of satisfactory insurance in respect of any injury or damage caused to a third party by the dog.
Certificates of Exemptions have to be renewed on an annual basis.
The importation of these dogs into Gibraltar is now prohibited.