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Wild Animals Act: Illegal Importation Of a Pit Bull Terrier Type Dog 8 September 2008

The importation of Pit Bull Terrier types and Tosa type dogs is illegal under the Wild Animals (Restriction on Importation, etc) Act 1980. They were listed in 1991 to prevent the import of such dogs from the UK and to assist in ensuring that incidents do not occur in the Isle of Man.

When it was discovered that a Pit Bull Terrier type dog had been illegally imported to the Isle of Man from Northern Ireland (where these animals are also illegal) the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) was required by law to take ownership of the dog.

The IOM Government has a duty not to allow these animals back into the public domain on the Island after they have been captured. Under the act, DAFF is required to dispose of the animal.

The dog has been cared for over the past three months in boarding kennels and during that time the Department, not wishing to destroy the dog if this were not necessary, has considered whether there are any alternatives, including finding a location off-island where it might be homed, where there are enforceable restrictions on the keeping of such dogs.

A specialist assessment of the dog has been carried out, with the conclusion that it could only be trusted 75-80 percent with humans and not at all with other dogs. In fact with other dogs it is considered dangerously aggressive. The department has concluded that it would be unsafe to allow the dog to go into private ownership here.

Efforts are still being made to find a suitable home for the dog in Eire where pitbulls are permitted under stringent conditions. They are prohibited in the UK.

Pit Bull Terrier types of dogs are not domestic pets, they are potential killers and should no suitable home be found off the island this dog will have to be put down.

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