Select Committee on Committee on the London Local Authorities Bill Minutes of Evidence


Evidence before the Committee (Questions 700-719)

WEDNESDAY 10 SEPTEMBER 2003

700.  As a generality?

(Mrs Kisko) No.

701.  The Kennel Club will not subscribe to what is to the layman blindingly self-obvious and self-evident, that more than four dogs on a lead are less controllable than less than four dogs. Is that the Kennel Club's approach?

(Mrs Kisko) I am sorry but it would depend entirely on the type of dogs.

702.  I am speaking generally.

(Mrs Kisko) It would depend entirely on the type of dogs.

703.  If you have a very docile animals ----

(Mrs Kisko) I am sorry, but if I had four of my huskies out in Wandsworth Park, whichever park it was, they would be gone. If one of them was off the lead they would be gone. If there were ten of them, they would be gone. If I had 16 border collies that were fully trained they would all be at my heel.

704.  But 16 border collies could also try and round up your husband.

(Mrs Kisko) Let us not get into that!

705.  The point is made and I do not labour it, it is a matter of commonsense. Let us just have a look, if we could, please, at the correspondence because I want the Kennel Club's view on this. It is in the bundle. The first that I want your help with is the letter from the Battersea Dogs Home. They are even more restrictive than the Bill is proposing, are they not, in their conduct? Are they incompetent?

(Mrs Kisko) Of course not.

706.  Is their approach to be waived?

(Mrs Kisko) I would point out that these are rescued dogs in the main which have probably had a very good time of it in the past, may well have had bad experience and would, therefore, not come into the generality of pets.

707.  A number of people are generous and take on rescued dogs, are they not?

(Mrs Kisko) Yes.

708.  There is, again, no certainty that one rescued dog is not going to be one of those that is walked in a group.

(Mrs Kisko) Correct. But equally well they could be one of those dogs that is being walked by a private owner.

709.  Absolutely. Again, the school. There were two which extremely frightened the children playing. That is two dogs. If there were more the fear factor would be more substantially, would it not?

(Mrs Kisko) Actually the suggestion was that it was more because it says in the letter "several", but only two dogs caused the damage. I do not think that actually follows.

710.  I am just asking for a commonsense approach in relation to the fear factor for local children playing with a ball or whatever and a group of dogs, to try and neutralise it, more than four, that come to try and take the ball away or frighten the children or whatever is unacceptable, is it not?

(Mrs Kisko) It would be but that is not what it says in the letter and we are talking about the letter here.

711.  It would be unacceptable, would it not?

(Mrs Kisko) If that was the circumstance, but it is not the circumstance suggested here.

712.  Let us look at it. I do not want to labour the point. The dogs were not supervised by their owner and one dog, a terrier, attacked several of the others and caused minor injuries.

(Mrs Kisko) I am sorry but what we are addressing here is multiple dog-walking and licensing. There is nothing in this letter that talks about it being a multiple dog-walker.

713.  No. The question I am putting to you is one terrier times five, is that better or worse?

(Mrs Kisko) It would depend on the circumstance.

714.  Commonsense again, please. It has got to be worse, has it not, for those children with their ball?

(Mrs Kisko) We are now jumping from what it says in this letter to a theoretical scenario where five terriers are chasing a ball.

715.  I hope the Kennel Club understand what the school mistress is concerned about. She is concerned about a dog threatening her children. Do you understand that?

(Mrs Kisko) Absolutely, and that is actually covered by the Dangerous Dogs Act.

716.  It is not covered by the Bill, is it?

(Mrs Kisko) Therefore, why are we discussing it?

717.  Let us look at it. If there were five dogs, would that be acceptable to the school mistress?

(Mrs Kisko) I am sorry, but I do not really understand.

718.  MR CLARKSON: Just answer the question, try it.

719.  MR MUNDY: I do not see why the witness should answer the question if she does not understand what it is. I do not think I follow it either actually.


 
previous page contents next page

House of Commons home page Parliament home page House of Lords home page search page enquiries index

© Parliamentary copyright 2003
Prepared 12 September 2003