The Dangerous Dogs Act will be enforced, with some minor adjustments, said Attorney General Anand Ramlogan.
Speaking with the media at his office on St Vincent Street, Port of Spain, yesterday afternoon, Ramlogan said the Government would accommodate the changes and the suggestions that made sense when the Bill was initially passed in Parliament.
“I feel very strongly about this matter that dog-specific legislation is a must. The idea that we should have control for all dogs is what I don’t subscribe to.
“So that I will go back in the new term when the Parliament reopens where we can in fact get the amendments in both houses. Parliament is scheduled to open some time in September and as soon as we get the budget out of the way I propose to take the amendments of the Dangerous Dogs Act so that we can in fact implement it and operationalise it,” Ramlogan said.
He added that he has spoken with Minister of Local Government Dr Suruj Rambachan to ensure that the necessary infrastructure is put in place to facilitate the Act.
Concerns of the breed identification raised by various groups will be addressed, including those of the Veterinary Association, who he has met with on the issue of genetic testing of the dogs and they will be addressed since the legislation does exist in other countries.
“Whatever issue the Veterinary Association has we will treat with it, but I want to forewarn persons that I am not about to let technicality and nicety lead to the death of another person,” said Ramlogan.
“It can’t be that other countries know how to identify the genetics of a pitbull and in Trinidad it cannot be done.
“We have to find a formula that will allow for the implementation of this law...it is badly needed in our society so I commit to finding that solution,” he added.
As it relates to insurance matters and the Act, Ramlogan said they have met with the Association of Trinidad and Tobago Insurance Companies (ATTIC) and are coming up with a proposal so that dog insurance will be an element of the homeowners’ property insurance policy.
“When the law comes into effect, families will have an additional boost so we have removed where to succeed in court you had to prove that the owner knew the dog had an inclination to attack humans...that is no longer going to be the case, so that people assume the risk with the animal that they are going to take as a pet,” the AG said.