Central Panel Recommends Ban on ‘Ferocious’ Dog Breeds

In a significant move aimed at curbing rising instances of fatal dog attacks across the country, the central government has directed all states and union territories to impose an immediate ban on the import, sale and breeding of 25 breeds of dogs deemed “ferocious” and dangerous to human life.

The decision follows the recommendations of an expert committee constituted by the Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying under the Ministry of Agriculture. The panel was set up in response to growing concerns and complaints from citizens’ groups and animal welfare organizations about serious and sometimes fatal attacks by certain breeds of pet dogs.

Rottweilers, Pitbulls Top List of Banned Breeds

The list of banned breeds includes some of the most popular but controversial large dog breeds such as Pitbull Terriers, Rottweilers, American Bulldogs, Mastiffs, Tosa Inus, Dogo Argentinos, Fila Brasileiros, Wolf dogs and various shepherd dog breeds like the Caucasian, Central Asian and South Russian ovcharkas.
Several mastiff breeds like Boerboels, Kangals and the Bandog have also been prohibited. The ban further extends to other breeds like the Akita, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Cane Corso and certain Terrier breeds.

The notification makes it clear that the prohibition applies not just to purebred dogs of these breeds but also their crosses and mixed breed progeny. This effectively rules out most large, muscular guard dog type breeds with a reputation for aggressiveness.

Owners of Existing Dogs Must Ensure Sterilization

For those who already own dogs of the specified breeds, the government has stipulated that they must have their pets compulsorily sterilized to prevent any further breeding. This is intended to ensure a gradual phasing out of these breeds as pets over time.
The letter cites the recommendations of the expert panel which was constituted with representation from various stakeholder groups like veterinarians, animal behavior experts, animal welfare organizations, municipal authorities and citizens’ groups.

The committee was tasked with identifying dog breeds that could be considered excessively aggressive or ferocious with the potential to fatally attack humans, especially when improperly trained or controlled. It was also asked to suggest remedial measures to control the breeding and sale of such breeds as pets.

Illegal Breeding, Improper Training Major Concerns

Animal rights activists and citizens’ groups have long raised the alarm about uncontrolled breeding of certain dog breeds, especially by illegal puppy mills and backyard breeders looking to cash in on the demand for fashionable, larger breeds as status symbols.

Improper training and poor socialization of these dogs coupled with irresponsible ownership have led to several well-publicized incidents of serious attacks on people by pet dogs, sometimes leading to deaths. Children and the elderly are particularly vulnerable.


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