Dog Awareness Week 2014 – 30 June – 4 July 2014

Dog Awareness Week 2014 – 30 June – 4 July 2014

Please join us at an event on the steps of the Senedd, National Assembly for Wales, Cardiff Bay, Cardiff, CF99 1NA at 12.30 p.m. on Tuesday, 1st July 2014 to mark the Royal Mail/Communication Workers’ Union Dog Awareness Week which runs from June 30th to July 4th. Please put this event in your diaries and be sure to come along and support all those who have staunchly campaigned over seven years for a new legal framework promoting both responsible dog ownership and safety for those whose job involves visiting some of the UK’s 29 million addresses, e.g. postal workers, telecommunication workers, health visitors and district nurses.

What’s the Idea behind the Dog Awareness week campaign?
The week is intended to highlight the tougher regime for irresponsible dog owners and their dangerous dogs brought into force by the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 (ABCPA). The new law has abolished the immunity which private owners enjoyed when their dogs attacked lawful visitors on land where the dog was permitted to be – a central aim of the Communication Workers’ Union Biteback Campaign. Coupled with tougher penalties – 14 years maximum imprisonment instead of 2 – and compulsory micro-chipping, the new regime will protect workers, children and dogs.

Why Now?
-Dog Attacks peak in summer school holidays.
-More dogs are allowed out unsupervised in the better weather, families are out and about, doors and
windows are open, side and back doors are open allowing dogs to roam in and out.

The 5 key messages/top tips being promoted are:-

  • Please keep your dog indoors around the time the Postman/Woman usually calls to deliver the mail.
  •  Please secure your dog in another room before opening the door to collect a parcel or sign for an item and don’t allow children to open the door as dogs can push past them and attack.
  • If you have a back garden, please close off access to the front when the Postman/Woman calls and be aware of open back and side doors and windows where a dog can get out.
  • If your dog attacks the mail, please consider fitting a letter box cage to protect your mail and the Postman’s fingers.
  • If it’s not practical to keep your dog inside and away from the Postman/Woman, please consider fitting a secure outside mailbox on the edge of your property.

We in the Campaign in Wales still remain unconvinced that the UK Government’s Community Protection Notices under s. 40 of ABCPA are a satisfactory substitute for the Dog Control Notices successfully operating in Northern Ireland and Scotland. Cardiff Councillor Dilwar Ali, whose small son was mauled by an out of control Rhodesian Ridgeback has commented “ We remain hopeful that the Welsh Ministers will introduce Dog Control Notices for Wales in a Welsh Bill. Nevertheless we welcome the new regime and, together with trade unions and employers, animal charities and vets, dog wardens and trainers, local authorities, doctors, nurses and other health workers, police and lawyers, will work to raise awareness and do our best to make the new regime work” .

I look forward to seeing you on 1st July.