Attack dogs in neighborhood

Are people in Berkeley allowed to have dogs specifically trained to attack people? Someone recently moved into the neighborhood with several very menacing dogs. They are fenced and there are warning signs saying that they will attack. I walked by the sidewalk the other day and a Doberman flew at the fence barking at me which scared the daylights out of me. I no longer walk by with my kids because I’m scared the dogs would kill us if the gate were left open.

Are people allowed to have these attack dogs? Are there any requirements for how they are kept? (Interested in preventative rules not post-bite documentation.) I grew up with dogs and like them quite a bit, but I also value feeling safe in my neighborhood and walking on city sidewalks.

Parent Replies

Parents, want to reply to this question? Sign in to post.

RE: Attack dogs in neighborhood ()

There's no regulation about having those signs.  You, me, and anyone could buy them at a number of pet stores or online. 

Sounds like the dogs are just jerks and have a ton of barrier aggression. 

As to if there are any dog restrictions in Berkeley?  No.  But anyone with dogs with real bite or protection training doesn't let them act like jerks at a fence line.

For example, my dogs, including two working breeds, are only allowed in our backyard with has a 6-foot wood privacy fence and the gate it double bolted.  The folks down the street have three mixes that have never left the backyard and pitch a fit behind a chain-link fence 24/7.

If you have concerns, you should call the BPD non-emergency line at 981-5900 and they can route your call to Animal Services.

RE: Attack dogs in neighborhood ()

Sorry you have to deal with this. Some dogs can be very scary behind a fence.   I have heard that people who deliver mail and some people and meter readers sometimes carry a "Dazer II".  It is an ultrasonic dog repellent.  Humans cannot hear it but dogs are usually surprised by the "sound" and will stop barking.   We got a Dazer because our dog has a high prey drive and was barking thru the fence.  The Dazer is distracting enough for her to look at us for re-direction.  

RE: Attack dogs in neighborhood ()

I'm not sure about the answer as to whether people are allowed to have "attack dogs" (my guess is no), but if you are concerned I would suggest you call Berkeley Animal Care Services and ask to speak to an animal control officer about this. They are awesome and will definitely have some answers/advice. I'd also talk with the neighbors about it perhaps?

RE: Attack dogs in neighborhood ()

I'm pretty sure I know the house and dogs you are referring to and I share your concerns.  I also had a scary experience last week walking by that house and, all of a sudden, the large dogs (no owners in sight) came racing up to the fence, barking loudly.  If someone were to put their fingers through the fence, which would be easy to do, I am concerned they might get bitten.  I now cross the street to avoid that house if the dogs are there.