Dangerous dogs

Reporting a dangerous dog

You can be prosecuted if your dog, or the one you are responsible for, is dangerously out of control anywhere. This includes in a public place, private place (such as a neighbour's garden) or your own home. You can also be prosecuted if your dog attacks an assistance dog.

If there is an immediate risk posed by the dog, please call Hertfordshire Police on 101. Alternatively, if the risk isn't immediate, please email animalwelfare@dacorum.gov.uk.


The maximum prison sentences for allowing a dog to attack someone are:

  • Up to 14 years for a fatal dog attack
  • Up to five years for injury
  • Up to three years if an assistance dog is attacked
  • Up to six months if your dog is dangerously out of control.

Banned dogs

In the UK, it’s against the law to own certain types of dog. These are the:
  1. Pit Bull Terrier
  2. Japanese Tosa
  3. Dogo Argentino
  4. Fila Brasileiro

It is an offence to own or keep any of these dogs, unless it is on the Index of Exempted Dogs and it meets the requirements.

You must not breed from, sell or exchange (even as a gift) a dangerous dog, even if it has been placed on the Index of Exempted Dogs.

The Police are responsible for dealing with dangerous dogs. Please telephone them on 101.

XL Bully dogs

XL Bully dogs are banned in England and Wales. It is a criminal offence to own an XL Bully unless you have a Certificate of Exemption for your dog. Find out more about the ban on XL Bully dogs.

More information

For more information on dangerous dogs, and controlling your dog, please visit the Government website.

Page Last Updated: Thursday, 01 February 2024 at 11:58 AM