That doggie in the window is about to become considerably more expensive

Dogcup Over at the Daily Express, the very latest in "you couldn't make it up" nanny statism: plans are afoot to make every dog owner in Britain pay up to £600 a year for puppy insurance, as the government tries to clamp down on dangerous dogs. Doesn't matter if you've got a miniature schnauzer, doesn't matter if you've had harmless Rufus for a dozen years and all he does is snooze by the fire – according to this hare-brained scheme, you'd have to cough up to cover the costs of the nutter who breeds bazooka-bearing bulldogs.

We have managed to own dogs in this country for hundreds of years without any tax or insurance requirement.

There’s a reason why the saying is ‘One man and his dog’ and not ‘One man, his dog and his third-party liability’. This policy is absurd and completely disproportionate.

But I don't think it will actually happen. You can tax us to high heaven, you can authorise bullying policemen to push us from pillar to post – people in this country just take it. But any man who messes with the great British pet is a fool – they simply won't manage to enforce this one.

This essential part of many families will be happily uninsured long after this government is history.

By Alex Deane

Posted by on Mar 9, 2010 in Home | 8 Comments


  1. Andrew Ampers Taylor
    9th March 2010

    You haven’t mentioned the number of dogs which will have to be “put to sleep” if this law goes ahead.
    I think that all MPs are either dogs or bitches.
    The above two paragraphs could be combined but I am not sure how :-)

  2. tony
    9th March 2010

    another example of the Home Office’s knee-jerk legislative thinking … a few wrong doers in society and their answer is that everyone should be suspect (cf vetting and barring, email/mobile/car reg logging etc etc)
    the lack of joined-up thinking and pure lack of intelligence in our law makers is beyond a joke

  3. Marie
    9th March 2010

    This governement remind me of those horrible school teachers who used to keep the whole class in when only one person had done something wrong. It’s the same socialist driven mentality, as Jeremy Clarkson recently pointed out (not that I’m usually a fan of his!)shit happens and shit will continue to happen regardless of how many controls are imposed. I really hope this is the wake up call for the public, as you say you don’t mess with the Brits and our dogs

  4. David Cooper
    9th March 2010

    Another thought: if legislation like this makes it through, just watch out for the shift from “serves you right, you shouldn’t have teased that dog” to “it nipped your finger – now’s our chance to sue for every penny” and yet another boom for the compensation culture. Is this really something to be encouraged?

  5. Cpswan
    9th March 2010

    This isn’t a knee jerk reaction. We already had that with the dangerous dogs act.
    This is sadly yet another example of ‘we’ve failed to properly enforce the existing law, so we’ll have a new totally disproportionate law instead and hopefully that will fix it’.
    It’s exactly the same thing as we see happening with the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA). There was a hiccup in the existing CRB regime that should have stopped Huntley before it was too late, but failed. So instead of fixing the existing system the government decides instead to produce an even more massive bureaucracy (which by its very size and complexity is even more doomed to fail).
    The second order problem is spin. ‘We’re going to have a new law that will fix this’ makes a much more compelling headline that ‘we’ll try to do a better job of enforcing whatever’, or ‘we’ll cut the budget for that a little less than we were planning to because it seems important at the moment’.
    All that is being achieved here is growth of the public sector (and national debt).
    Sadly the greatest issue is that this will fix nothing. It will inconvenience the law abiding man (and dog) on the street, and be totally ignored by those it’s intended to deal with. As a friend tweeted earlier ‘Insurance for dogs should work well – the most dangerous lawbreaking motorists are the ones who buy insurance and tax first, after all’

  6. Purlieu
    9th March 2010

    This is a classic headliner pre-election scam.

  7. LeChiffre
    9th March 2010

    It’s another form of dog licensing: it was only abolished in 1987; it would be easy to bring back in a more expensive form.

  8. Kay
    14th March 2010

    There’s an election coming up folks. You know what to do …