Dog Laws in the Netherlands

Dog Laws in the Netherlands
Dog Laws in the Netherlands

The Netherlands is hailed as one of the most dog friendly countries in the world. 

They also claim to be the first country to be free of stray and feral dogs. 

Most of the dogs in their rescue shelters are from countries such as Romania, Spain and Greece.

Around twenty dog breeds and crossbreeds considered dangerous are banned in the Netherlands and current owners have to complete a compulsory course about keeping dogs which are known to have a propensity to violence and attacks. 

Many require the wearing of a muzzle when in public. In addition, there is a central register to record dog bite incidents and a hotline for people to report a dangerous dog or owners who refuse to deal with their dogs. 

In 2019, because of the related severe health issues, the Dutch Kennel club banned the breeding of 12 brachycephalic type breeds, including pugs, Boston terriers, shih-tzus, British bulldogs, French bulldogs, King Charles spaniels and Affenpinschers.

The Dutch Kennel club has the authority to inspect breeders, they require proof of DNA testing in an attempt to reduce hereditary diseases in purebred dogs. 

Only then, if there are no obvious behaviour problems, can a suitability for breeding certificate be issued. 

The kennels are inspected and bitches may not have more than one litter every 12 months. Pets cannot be sold to anyone younger than sixteen years old and animals for sale cannot be displayed in a shop windows.

The Dutch government set up a dedicated police force- the dierenpolitie, they are solely committed to addressing issues related to animals, they have around 250 police who have undergone special training; they have practical knowledge of veterinary care for pets and wildlife.

All dogs are supposed to have a passport in the Netherlands stating where the dog is from, the breeder and a list of vaccinations.