Dangerous dog act in Spain?

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09 Aug 2009 00:00 by Tom2009 Star rating in Axarquia. 11 posts Send private message

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Hi. I've been reading up on the issue on english and spainsh sites, but still a bit clueless.

We are moving to Spain in October and bringing our 2 dogs from the US. One is a german shepard/chow mix and the other a Bulldog ( Bull breed? ), both over 25kgs.

They are both big softys and non aggressive, but still seem to qualify in the dangerous dog act.

Between the special EU vet certificates, microchips, flights,  it is already costing quite a bit already.

Once in Spain it looks like we may have to register the dogs with the townhall, get  a vet evaluation, insurance, etc.

Has anyone gone through this procedure with their dogs for the 50/99 law?

And what was your experience?

Thanks, Tom.

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10 Aug 2009 12:03 by mariadecastro Star rating in Algeciras (Cadiz). 9335 posts Send private message

Legal Questions? Speak to Maria Direct

  1. Pit Bull Terrier.

  2. Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

  3. American StaffodshireTerrier.

  4. Rottweiler.

  5. Dogo Argentino.

  6. Fila Brasileiro.

  7. Tosa Inu.

  8. Akita Inu.

 If your dog is among the species above, you ( not the dog! :))  need to apply for a license for its tenancy before the Local Council. I would advise you to ask and learn about the procedure in our specific local council.


Maria L. de Castro, JD, MA


Director www.costaluzlawyers.es

El blog de Maria

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10 Aug 2009 12:53 by morerosado Star rating in Guardamar del Segura.... 6927 posts Send private message

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Tom, I know you posted in Protection/ Guard dog wanted too so I have already advised on what I know. Our friends went through it all & posted full details on a website dedicated to their 'dangerous' dog but the site was hacked into & deleted & much info lost.

My friend is offline otherwise I'd ask if she had kept copies (she must've done) but she had a problem with her pc, changed it & may not find the notes she kept. German Shepherds were listed on THIS SITE  (I have told you that in Protection/ Guard dog wanted

New Dog Laws

Spain has now announced new laws No 50/99 which could affect you. A list of dogs considered dangerous has been drawn up as follows:-

Pit Bull and all Bull breeds
All Mastiffs
Canary Island Prey Dog
Caucasian Shepherd
Brazilian Fila
Corsican Can
German Shepherds.
All dogs over 25 Kilos in weight.


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11 Aug 2009 01:23 by Tom2009 Star rating in Axarquia. 11 posts Send private message

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Yes, i started to post on the other thread and realized i was changing the original subject.

I suppose we will find out if the dogs qualify when we arrive and check in with a local vet.

The law is a bit vague. The engish bulldog is a bull breed, but as many know, these dogs are too lazy to be aggressive.



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11 Aug 2009 01:30 by morerosado Star rating in Guardamar del Segura.... 6927 posts Send private message

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Our friends dog is an English bull terrier, as shown here, Tom, & classed as a dangerous dog in Spain I assure you. They went through the legal registering process as I've said twice now.


This message was last edited by morerosado on 11/08/2009.


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17 Aug 2009 18:20 by yb Star rating. 13 posts Send private message

 do you have the source of these new rules?

im hoping to move next year and bringing a GS... ive been scouring the internet and found the following:


How do I Know if my dog is considered as potentially dangerous?

The Royal Decree considers the following dogs as potentially dangerous:

  1. Those belonging to one of the following breeds and their crosses

    • Pit Bull Terrier
    • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
    • American Staffordshire Terrier
    • Rottweiler
    • Dogo Argentino
    • Fila Brasileiro
    • Tosa Inu
    • Akita Inu

  2. Those animals that display all or most of the following characteristics

    • Strong musculature, powerful or athletic constitution, robustness, agility, vigour and endurance.
    • Strong character and marked courage.
    • Short hair.
    • Thoracic perimeter between 60 and 80 centimeters (24 and 32 inches), height at the shoulder between 50 and 70 centimeters (20 and 28 inches) and weight over 20 kg (44 lbs).
    • Voluminous, square, robust head, with a wide and large skull and muscular and pronounced cheeks. Strong and large jaws, robust, wide and deep snout.
    • Broad, short and muscled neck.
    • Broad, thick, deep chest, with arched ribs and short and muscled back.
    • Straight, parallel and robust forelegs and very muscular hindquarters, with relatively long hindlegs at a moderate angle.

  3. Those dogs with a record of aggressive tendencies or prior attacks to humans or other animals.



which seems the common set of rules...

anyway, given that set of rules, most medium size dogs would be classified as potentially dangerous, in part (b)... in fact i think they used a GS as the basis for the description in (b)   ;)   ... quite an odd/arbitary set of rules e.g. Short haired... so a long haired GS is potentially less  dangerous.

anyways, my concern is my GS is nervous of strangers including vets, so im assuming that it will be classified as potenitally dangerous... what does this actually mean?

i assume:

- short lead/muzzle in public

- insurance 

- big fence  (2 meters) 

- i have to be proved

... it mentions providing details of training program, is that any training, or have to be some kind of certified training?

(sorry, dont want to hijack thread, i think its relevant to OP ?)  





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18 Aug 2009 16:23 by mr.kevin Star rating in Costa Blanca. 189 posts Send private message

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Looks like my daft, soppy but gorgeous Weimerana is a dangerous dog then, I will have to report her life threatening lick to our local council. It is a good job the policia local in Albatera have some common sense.

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20 Aug 2009 13:10 by SEAK Star rating. 22 posts Send private message

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Hi I am new to the Forum we have been living in Spain for a month now and we are going to be flying our dog over in the next couple of weeks. Having read this I am a bit worried now as we have a Staffordshire Bull X breed he looks a bit like one but has longer legs. Does anyone know if the rules still apply to X breeds as well. I can't beleive the freight company or the vet didn't mention this. I have even been into the vets in Spain to ask them what I needed flea and sand fly wise and they didn't say anything about the dangerous dog act!


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20 Aug 2009 15:22 by morerosado Star rating in Guardamar del Segura.... 6927 posts Send private message

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x breeds could be considered as worse, I don't know, Seak, is your dog over 25 kg too ?


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21 Aug 2009 14:46 by praguepix Star rating in Marbella Villa. 101 posts Send private message

We have a Rhodesian Ridgeback, 54 kilos of muscle, looks scary and will indeed lick you to death!!  Our local police admire him behave affectionately towards him and have not once asked whether he is registered. They are interested only in the breed, his habits and comment admiringly on his fine appearance.

It seems Ridgebacks, especially excellent pedigree ones, aren't common here.

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21 Aug 2009 16:23 by SEAK Star rating. 22 posts Send private message

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Hi, No he is just short of 25kg he is 23kg when we weighed him for the freight company a few months ago. Could I ask the post about the Ridgeback are you saying you haven't registered him then? What happens if you don't register them.? He is as soft as anything and again like others have said would just lick someone to death if anything. With all due respect I find all the Chiwawas more dangerous over here all yapping at people when they pass!

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21 Aug 2009 16:51 by morerosado Star rating in Guardamar del Segura.... 6927 posts Send private message

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I'm certain many owners don't register these dogs that, by law ought to be registered. Our friends, as I have said many times, own an English bull terrier, classed as a dangerous dog, see my post 11 Aug 2009 01:30

You have to do so much to register them & they were annoyed they chose to abide by the law when many others don't as it took so much effort, dept - dept & back again, nothing was that clear. They said they wished they'd never started the process.

Her PC is presumably down as I can't contact her or I'd ask as she wrote a great fact sheet based on their experiences with 'THE LAW'


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22 Aug 2009 22:39 by EOS Team Star rating in In Spain of course!. 4017 posts Send private message

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 Just thought I'd post a link to an article on this subject that we have on the site:

Dangerous Dogs Act Insurance



Schools in Spain Guide | The Expat Files | Learn Spanish | Earn a living in Spain

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22 Aug 2009 23:24 by Tom2009 Star rating in Axarquia. 11 posts Send private message

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Great!  Thanks for the link Justin.

Hopefully all will go well with the dogs when we get there.

Just want to do everything right.  Don't want one of those 115.000 euro fines!!!

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19 Nov 2009 19:32 by cazzy Star rating in Inland Andalucia. 180 posts Send private message

When we moved over 6 years ago we didn't realize that our Akita was classed as dangerous. It wasn't until we tried to put him in kennels, when they asked for his license and insurance. As he was over 8 years old we didn't have to take out the insurance. We were told we would have to undergo testing to make sure we were capable of controlling him. I went to the town hall who said they would sort it out. He died last year at the age of 14 the town hall never did get back to us. The vet never seemed worried about the dog, we never muzzled him or walked him on a lead. I think because we live in the country it wasn't such an issue.

As I understand it only the person on the insurance and the person who has been tested can take the dog out.

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28 Nov 2009 12:29 by praguepix Star rating in Marbella Villa. 101 posts Send private message

Very belated reply to SEAK, if you're still around: no, we haven't registered him. We took him to our local vet who stroked and cuddled him and said that she knew dangerous dogs and he wasn't one!!

I suspect that, as a previous poster has said, if you do attempt to do so nothing will happen anyway.

Experience of living in countries other than Spain has taught me that there are laws and laws. Some you should and must comply with. There are others that the native inhabitants cheerfully ignore.

We always have our dog on the lead and muzzled on the rare occasions when he is taken into public places. He is never taken into town centres or similar as it isn't pleasant for him or other people.  He runs free on the campo only when we are absolutely certain it is safe to do so. If we see people or dogs we put him on the lead.

The real problem isn't so much with big dogs as with little dogs whose owners seem to think that no rules apply to them. They allow their dogs to run all over the place, jumping at strangers, getting too close to other dogs like ours who are on the lead and are generally a flaming nuisance.  Our big softie has been bitten several times by yapping little monsters. One day he will lose patience and retaliate  and of course he will be blamed, not the little Yorkie or whatever and its irresponsible owner.

Oh, and we always pick up after our dog, again something the owners of small dogs fail to do.


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17 Feb 2010 20:09 by jane b Star rating in Bedar, Almeria. 222 posts Send private message

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 Slight thread creep, but does anyone have any experience of what happens when you denounce an owner whose dog has launched a vicious, unprovoked attack on another animal?

A well known vicious dog in our local village, which has has plenty of previous including a really bad mauling of a small dog, is supposed to be muzzled and on a lead all the time, went for our lovely, gentle dog from 100 metres away and gave him a nasty gash in his flank, plus another in his rump as he (ours) ran away.  It would have been much, much worse if he had not been so strong and so fast.  At the time it was neither muzzled (quote the owner 'I took the muzzle off because she wanted to eat some grass') nor on a lead.

The owner categorically refuses to have her dog put down despite threats to denounce her and says that the Guardia will not make her have it put down as it 'only' attacked another dog.

We find this all really hard to believe - can she really choose to ignore the threat that this dog presents to other dogs and, God forbid, perhaps to a child that it might take a fancy to.

So my question is, does anyone know if the Guardia really will do anything or will they sit on their hands because she is 'local' (actually she is French but has lived here 30 years and now has Spanish nationality) and we are English?



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17 Feb 2010 21:58 by sandra Star rating in . 810 posts Send private message

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Poor Kippy, I hope he is on the mend now. Give him a little stroke from me Jane.

Does the woman not know that grass is bad for dogs and that they usually only eat it when they are feeling sick in order to make themselves vomit?

The guardia  should certainly enforce the lead and muzzle before it attacks a child, although I think you might have answered your own question in the last paragraph of your post.

Perhaps it should be pointed out to the guardia that without the lead and muzzle,  there are  endless disasterous scenarios and opportunities for the dog to harm  babies, small children, adults, even livestock.  It  might encourage them to do something positive.

Our weimeraner,Ben, was once attacked in the local (UK) park. It almost tore his ear off and made small puncture wounds in his neck . He had to have his ear stitched  but then the puncture wound  quickly became badly infected and he had to have another operation to insert a drain tube. Fortunately the threat of calling  police scared the owner into paying the vets bill and my husband never saw him in the park again with that dog. 

Some owners are totally irresponsible.









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17 Feb 2010 22:13 by jane b Star rating in Bedar, Almeria. 222 posts Send private message

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 Thank you for the support, Sandra.  I will pass on the pat!

We have known the owner for years - in fact we bought our land through her 10 years ago.  She has a pretty poor track record with pets - lots of good intentions but no common sense and limited funds so there have often been problems with dogs and cats.  Too long to go into here!  So as she has some rather quaint views about pet care I don't think she would be easy to convince  that eating grass is not 'good for the digestion'.

Where we are at now is that if the end result  of a denuncio, is not that the dog has to be put down, we can't see the point - we don't want revenge on her (or the bad blood that would follow), we just want to be absolutely certain that it can't happen again.  And there is nothing more certain than that it WILL happen again (or worse) if the dog is not put down.   Our neighbours, however, who were walking Kippy at the time of the incident, are adamant that they want to denounce her.  It was the fifth occasion on which it has gone for him when he has been with them, but usually it is muzzled, and the previous occasions have been near to its home whereas this time it was a good distance away. Which means that my strategy of never going near the house with Kippy, despite that being a logical route, is no use at all as we could meet it anywhere.

I fear that this will run and run and there will be no solution:  I fail totally to understand how anyone can live with the stress of having a large, unstable dog .



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17 Feb 2010 22:43 by bodyworker Star rating in By the Mar menor. 34 posts Send private message


I feel the law stands regarding dog bites etc all depends on how busy or not the Guardia civil are.. in my experience with problem dogs/owners you are on a up hill climb.  Funny enough I got savaged by a Bull mastif whilst visiting a local garden centre.   There actually were two together, my wife said to me 'ah look at those lovely dogs, I think i will go and coach one! As the dogs were not tethered and the garden assistant said they were fine to 'coach' I thought I better coach the beast 1st just in case of any miss haps etc.

I am good normally with dogs, next thing I knew the dog fanged me with a nasty snarl!

cut a long story short, 6 months of going to police, local and Guardia time an time again and then going to solicitor.  I finally got the money it cost me to stich up my torn hand...

I think the police knew the owner and wanted to put me off etc, what a pain, and it makes a mockery of the police limp wristed attitude to attempt to help a completely innocent (english) person.

May be you could denounce the owner but you will need plenty of signatures and lots of patience and do bother taking your paperwork to the police around early morning, lunchtime or later in the day...

That aside they were very efficient stopping me and giving me a speeding ticket the other week.

I wish you lots of luck

Kind regards

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