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  #281  
Old 13.03.2013, 19:47
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

Thanks for posting this Sbrinz.

This should serve as a wake up call to many dog owners.

(Were there further consequences to the dog, did she have to stand a Wesenstest?)

Good thing the owner had already done the SKN courses. From perusing the fine/sentence database, compliance is checked when a complaint is made, and if found non-compliant there are often additional consequences.)

Here's hoping that all concerned - cyclist, owner and dog - can move forward.
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  #282  
Old 13.03.2013, 19:57
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

The story hasn't ended yet, the case is being handled / persued by the Berne Kantonal Veterinary Amt, so there maybe further demands upon the dog.

As I said, she was startled, normally she is a lovely dog. I don't know much more.
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  #283  
Old 13.03.2013, 20:48
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

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Thans god I am in France !!! My dog is old English mastiff 87 kg ....
Don't cross the border with him/her!

What is the status of your dog in France - do be VERY careful. Not sure how good your French is (ask if you need a translation) but the 1999 new French law is very dependent on interpretation- has your dog got an official and recorded Pedigree - of a breed approved by the French LOF? If not, in case of police or complaint by 3rd party, he will be deemed illegal, on a vet's assessment re size, shape, weight, etc.


Here is the info (on France) in English from www.canidom64.free.fr


During the last ten years, many European countries have created specifics laws relating "dangerous dogs".
On january the 6th 1999, France passed the first law in relation to the above and created two different "dangerous dogs" lists.

The first list
called "first category" (in french : catégorie 1) concerns only dogs that are not registered on the national french kennel book . The dogs on this list are called "attack dogs".
The second list called "second category" (in french : 2ème catégorie) concerns the same dogs, but those that are registered on the french kennel book (with the exception of Rottweilers). The dogs on this list are called "defense dogs".
Dogs from the two lists must be on leash, museled, and handle by a personn aged mimium 18 years, not under tutorship, and not condamned for crime.
A 1st category dog cannot be taken on common transport, cannot stay in the collective parts of a building or publics places (except in the street). You are not allowed to breed, import, export, sell, buy or give a 1st category dog. It means that if you own a 1st category dog, it will be untill death, because the owner cannot change.
Another part of the law :
Any dog's bite must be declared to the Mairie and the dog must be evaluated by an approved veterinary (on Prefecture list). The report is send to the Mairie where the dog live and the Maire will decide of the following. He has the authority to required canine education by a dog trainer, or the "attestation d'aptitude" (dangerous dog seminar), or everything that is useful to avoid danger and preserve safety.
If a dog is considered as dangerous, even if it is not on both "dangerous dogs' lists" and has not bitten, the Maire can required all what is necessary to preserve people safety.


On june the 20th 2008, the second and latest french law on the subject was passed. This law added an other obligation :
You must obtain a special "DANGEROUS DOGS LICENCE" to keep your dog.

To obtain your licence, you are require to :
- Get a behavioural evaluation report of your dog from a veterinary registered on a Prefecture list. He will evaluate how dangerous the dog is and classify it into one of 4 levels (1st not dangerous, 4th very dangerous).

- Get a certificate called "attestation d'aptitude", from an approved instructor (registered on a Prefecture list) relating to dog behavioural developement, canine education, and prevention of the accidents (7 hour seminar).
- Take all the following documents to your Mairie :
- veterinary behavioural report
- seminar certificate (called "attestation d'aptitude") sign by an approved instructor.
- valid anti rabies vaccination certificate
- valid special dog insurance
- dog identification papers (microchip / tattoo)
- veterinary certificate that the dog has been sterilized (required for dogs on the first list only )

The Maire will issue your licence, ensuring that you can keep your dog. Without this licence, the police have the authority to remove your dog to a special kennel, at your cost, untill you have aquired the above documents. If you do not, the Maire has the authority to have the dog put down (euthanasia).

Last edited by Odile; 13.03.2013 at 21:24.
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  #284  
Old 13.03.2013, 21:15
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

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The story hasn't ended yet, the case is being handled / persued by the Berne Kantonal Veterinary Amt, so there maybe further demands upon the dog.

As I said, she was startled, normally she is a lovely dog. I don't know much more.
All fingers and paws here crossed that milder measures are sought.

BTW, in a similar case involving a friend-of-a-friend, I heard that the dog's trainer went to bat for the dog and owner with the Veterinäramt. That the dog and owner regularly attended a Hundeschule was a huge plus in their favor, and apparently helped to sway the judgement. If this dog's owner hasn't already done so, gathering statements from those who know the dog and owner, especially from professionals like a trainer or a vet, might be useful.

Keeping my thumbs pressed for good measure.
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  #285  
Old 14.03.2013, 01:37
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

Thanks Odile for the valuable info. I don't speak french.
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  #286  
Old 29.03.2013, 20:36
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

The small dogs need to have any training?
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  #287  
Old 29.03.2013, 20:52
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

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The small dogs need to have any training?
All dogs have to be registered and you may need to do both the theoretical and practical SKN course whatever the size of dog you own. Do you already have a dog or are you thinking of getting one?
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  #288  
Old 29.03.2013, 20:54
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

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The small dogs need to have any training?
Yes, all dogs, regardless of size, are required to do the federal SKN courses.

This has been discussed at length in other posts, but to give you a summary:

There are two levels of laws governing dogs and their owners. At the federal level - applicable to all dog owners in all cantons - there are the SKN courses, microchipping, and the database registration in ANIS.

If one is a first time dog owner in Switzerland, one must do the SKN theory course before acquiring a dog. If one has had dogs before, but in another country, one must apply to the cantonal Veterinarämt for a determination if your proof of prior ownership is acceptable, or not.

(Even if excused, it is strongly recommended that you do the theory course anyway, as this will explain why what is expected of dog ownersis so very different here from other countries.)

Regardless of previous dog ownership, all dog owners must take the SKN practical courses with each and every dog registered in your name, within 12 months of acquiring the dog or of arriving in Switzerland.

(The SKN courses are very basic; it is strongly recommended that you continue with something like Familienhund, as you are expected to have your dog trained to a relatively high standard.)

Your dog must be microchipped (also necessary to enter the country) and the microchip number and your details must be entered into ANIS, the Swiss database. Only a vet can do the entry, and this must be done within 10 days of acquiring the dog or entering Switzerland - so plan on a vet visit soon.

In addition to federal regulations, there are also cantonal laws. These will vary - you are required to know and follow the laws of not only the canton in which you reside, but also of any you visit.

Some cantons impose additional training requirements, some do so based on size/breed of dog. Some require a dog to stand a Wesenstest, depending on breed and size, and - in the case of GL, if you own more than one dog. A summary of the cantonal laws can be found here:
http://www.tierimrecht.org/de/tiersc...echt/index.php

Additionally, the cantons levy a dog tax; it usually is around CHF 150 per dog, but will vary. You are also required to register your dog with the Gemeinde - this is done at the time you register yourself.

You can read more about Switzerland's expectations of dog owners here:
http://www.bvet.admin.ch/tsp/02222/

And search the forum for the term 'SKN' to read the many threads on the subject.
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Old 29.03.2013, 21:18
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

Medea Fleecestealer - I have the dog but I'm not living in the Switzerland. To be honest, I'm looking for a job but it is not easy because I don't speak german.
@meloncollie - Do you know the price of this course?
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  #290  
Old 29.03.2013, 21:43
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

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@meloncollie - Do you know the price of this course?
The SKN course prices are not regulated, but for group courses they generally run in the neighborhood of CHF 150 each... so figure on ca 300.

If you need to take an individual course, that will likely cost more.


And speaking of costs:

The vet fee to register your dog with ANIS varies from 0 to ca. 50... some vets roll it into your introductory consultation, some charge separately.

Also, most cantons require dog owners to carry liability insurance in the range of 1-3 million; this is usually part of your Privathaftpflicht policy. But even if charged separately the cost is not much, usually under CHF 50.
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Old 29.03.2013, 22:41
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

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Also, most cantons require dog owners to carry liability insurance in the range of 1-3 million; this is usually part of your Privathaftpflicht policy. But even if charged separately the cost is not much, usually under CHF 50.
For month or annual?
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  #292  
Old 30.03.2013, 09:18
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

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For month or annual?
Per year.

But the total cost of your Privathaftpflicht and Haushalt insurance will be higher than that - check out comparis.ch for an idea.

(BTW - while you are adding up the costs of dog ownership in Switzerland, don't forget the difficulty in finding housing. Expect to pay 3x your rent in a deposit.)

Everything in Switzerland is regulated and expensive, dog ownership included.
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  #293  
Old 30.03.2013, 17:21
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

Also when you're lucky enough to land that job and are looking to move here do make it clear to any possible landlords/rental agencies that you have a dog. Some places don't allow them so please don't try and ignore their rule and hope for the best. If they say no dogs, then look for another place that does allow them.
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  #294  
Old 12.06.2013, 19:21
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

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A little warning...

About 14 months ago my friend was walking her dog in darkness, off the lead on a footpath, on a country road in Bern. A cyclist went past which startled the dog. The dog chased the cyclist and injured him slightly on the lower leg, he received a bruise and a scratch. He didn't fall off the bike, he didn't lose any blood.

She has just been fined CHF 1'190 or 10 days in jail, plus another CHF 900 if there is a repeat offense within 2 years. (I think the actual fine is CHF 700, plus a lot of administration costs. She has had one interview with the police, but no court appearance.)

The cyclist went to a doctor and to a lawyer and then to the police. The fine has been imposed by a cantonal authority, if she appeals there will be higher costs, and possibly higher punishment.

The cyclist didn't claim for torn clothes, but he is claiming another CHF 300,-- which she believes is for the doctor's visit, and she will be paying this.

Before the attack they both attended the official dog training classes in Bern, and she was a very good pupil, so the attack was very unexpected.

I look after the dog for 24 hours every week and she is a very well behaved dog. I always keep her on the lead, unless we are in the woods or fields and away from anyone, though I could easily leave her off the lead, she always stays with me and will come back quickly when called. She is a Barbet, poodles are descended from the Barbet race.

http://www.google.de/imgres?q=barbet...8&tx=116&ty=50

I don't want to discuss this, it happened and now we keep her on the lead. This is just a helpful hint about possible consequences.
A follow up.. Well things do go very slowly here...

My friend was able to get legal insurance through the dog breeders' association (a rare breed, Barbet dog) & she has instructed a lawyer in Bern.

The lawyer has contacted the cantonal authority and reached an agreement that as no blood was released it was not a serious criminal assault. The victim had some scratches and a bruise on his ankle. The lawyer has also contacted the victim and pointed out that he will now probably lose the court case. The owner has offered to pay his medical costs, about CHF 400 if he will drop the case. The victim would now have to pay the administrative costs as he has lost.

Nothing is definite yet, but it might give you an idea of the difficulties. A problem is that with a serious assault on your police record, it might restrict your choices and chances in the future.

I will keep you informed when any progress is made...
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  #295  
Old 12.06.2013, 19:59
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

Thanks for the update, Sbrinz.

Hoping for a final outcome that is fair and proportionate. Thumbs pressed.


This is indeed a cautionary tale all dog owners in Switzerland should heed.
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Old 24.03.2014, 11:59
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

I will start off by saying that I am a horrible person (I also have extensive experience with animals). Regarding this theory class. I see that I am required to take it, and fortunately a local trainer is kind enough to offer these on Sundays which is amazing. The course is offered in french, and my french comprehension is- not too awful, although I can tend to get lost and find words that aren't there and then the rest of the sentence makes no sense... So are there printed materials (spaces between words are a godsend), and is there a test at the end, or will I just be given the certification for attendance?

My dog already has the Canine Good Citizen through the AKC in the US, I have worked in several vets' offices over the years, I have a bachelor's in equine husbandry, and I have certification on the ins-and-outs of laboratory animal handling and laws. I'm not worried that the course will really include some vital tidbit of information that I will be non-functional without. But I'll do whatever it takes to get this all done legally.
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Old 24.03.2014, 12:24
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

If you only have to do the 4 sessions and no exam (because your dog really doesn't look like it's on the BSL.....yet!) then you'll be fine. You get the certificate for attending.
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  #298  
Old 24.03.2014, 12:34
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

As far as dangerousness goes, cavaliers will be the very last breed banned.
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Old 24.03.2014, 19:59
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

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So are there printed materials (spaces between words are a godsend), and is there a test at the end, or will I just be given the certification for attendance?
Not to worry - there is no test. Attendence is what is required. You will likely receive a certificate at the end of the course, keep this for your files. Some Gemeinden require a copy of the certificate for their records, others don't. But you'll need to be able to produce the certificate if asked.

For the practical course, some trainers use written materials, some do not. When you book the class, ask the trainer, and if she does use written materials you can always ask for copies ahead of time.

Don't worry about your language skills - I learned much of my German in dog class. I've always said that the Hundeschule is the best Sprachschule around.

Good luck!
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Old 25.03.2014, 00:36
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Re: Federal Dog Control Legislation

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A follow up.. Well things do go very slowly here...

My friend was able to get legal insurance through the dog breeders' association (a rare breed, Barbet dog) & she has instructed a lawyer in Bern.

The lawyer has contacted the cantonal authority and reached an agreement that as no blood was released it was not a serious criminal assault. The victim had some scratches and a bruise on his ankle. The lawyer has also contacted the victim and pointed out that he will now probably lose the court case. The owner has offered to pay his medical costs, about CHF 400 if he will drop the case. The victim would now have to pay the administrative costs as he has lost.

Nothing is definite yet, but it might give you an idea of the difficulties. A problem is that with a serious assault on your police record, it might restrict your choices and chances in the future.

I will keep you informed when any progress is made...
The final result was as explained above. Owner paid the medical costs, plaintiff paid the court costs, breeder insurance paid the lawyer.

Phew! It has turned out reasonably well, but we were surprised at the levels of investigation.

Post script: the dog collapsed 2 weeks ago. She had an emergency operation to remove a cancerous spleen, and sadly the future doesn't look good, she has a very aggressive cancer. Maybe only a few more months left for her, but we will give her a good life, before she has to be put to sleep.
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