Ability of the public to recognize dogs considered to be dangerous under the Dangerous Dogs Act in the United Kingdom

Webster, C.A. and Farnworth, M.J. ORCID: 0000-0001-6226-0818, 2018. Ability of the public to recognize dogs considered to be dangerous under the Dangerous Dogs Act in the United Kingdom. Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science. ISSN 1088-8705

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Abstract

In the United Kingdom (UK) canine aggression became an issue in the 1980s, prompting the enactment of the UK Dangerous Dogs Act (1991) which prohibited four breeds or dog “types”. The Act faced opposition based on the ability to correctly identify prohibited dogs. This study distributed an online questionnaire to the public and those who have worked with dogs. Respondents’ abilities to identify the four banned types from other breeds was assessed, along with their ability to distinguish pit bull terrier types from similar dogs. Identification of banned breeds (F1,20 = 57.746, p < 0.001) and bull breeds (F1,20 = 9.293, p = 0.006) was significantly lower than other breeds. Recognition of pit bull terrier types as compared to similar types was generally poor, although people in a dog-related profession could correctly distinguish more pit bull type dogs than those not in a dog profession (U = 46164.0, n1 = 187, n2 = 575, p = 0.003). The findings suggest that public ability to identify dangerous dogs is poor. This may impact upon societal perceptions of dogs more widely.

Item Type: Journal article
Alternative Title: Ability of pulic to recognize dogs considered dangerous under Dangerous Dogs Act of the United Kingdom
Publication Title: Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science
Creators: Webster, C.A. and Farnworth, M.J.
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Date: 30 May 2018
ISSN: 1088-8705
Identifiers:
NumberType
10.1080/10888705.2018.1476864DOI
Divisions: Schools > School of Animal, Rural and Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: Linda Sullivan
Date Added: 19 Mar 2018 10:59
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2018 10:49
URI: http://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/33016

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