Dogs in Cumbernauld and Kilsyth must be kept under control

Cumbernauld’s most senior policeman has issued a warning to dog owners, after a rise in the number of attacks being featured in this newspaper.

The News and Chronicle has reported on a relatively high number of incidents which have seen a variety of breeds lash out at other pets and even their owners.

There have been reports that pensioners have been knocked off their feet by the force of aggressive dogs whose owners stand accused of failing to control such fits of aggression.

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Tiny dogs like Yorkshire Terriers have narrowly escaped the clutches of bigger dogs, resulting in painful injuries to their tiny frames.

Their owners have been put in the distressing position of having to free their pets while risking serious injuries themselves.

And that’s just not good enough, according to Chief Inspector David Bruce who believes the problem may be even more serious than it first appears as it is believed that some attacks go unreported.

He said: “The incidents are not the result of thugs on the street with dangerous dogs trained to attack.

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“They are caused by owners who do not have their dog under proper control and who are often well aware that their dog is ‘not good with other animals’.

“Dog trainers recognise that aggression toward other dogs and otherwise calm family pets. Many will be unneutered males and will not have had dominant and aggressive behaviour as a pup corrected.

“I am in no doubt that a number of breeds of dog are more prone to aggression and unsuitable for timid owners and it is now far more common to see larger breeds, wandering off the lead.

“Dog owners must ensure that their animal be kept under proper control. If they have any doubt, the dog must not be taken off the lead in any area where there’s a chance it could come across other dogs or people.

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“Dogs taken into public areas should be properly trained and that extends simply beyond being taught to sit or returning to heel when the dog decides to do so.

“Owning a dog can bring great joy and companionship but it must be done responsibly.

“It requires time, commitment, training and research. If you cannot fully control your dog on and off the lead, then please do not risk your own wellbeing and that of other owners and their pets.”