Last week, Switzerland’s Federal Council confirmed parliament’s decision to end the requirement for dog owners to undergo training. However, cantons will be able to pass their own laws if they wish.
The Zurich politician Ruedi Noser (PLR/FDP) started the move to change the rules. According to him, the courses were expensive, administratively burdensome and had no discernable impact.
The training requirement was introduced in 2008 after several bloody dog attacks. Recently, such attacks have been rare. The Federal Council decided that voluntary courses make sense, particularly for those getting a dog for the first time. Federal Councillor Alain Berset (Social Democratic Party) said: “While it’s true there are no statistics, we can see a link.” According to research, this voluntary approach was favoured by both vets and dog owners.
The obligation will no longer apply from 1 January 2017.