What is a dangerous dog?

Dangerous dogs can be of any breed; however some breeds are more prone to attacking than others.

The Dog Act 1976 recognises three categories of dangerous dogs:

  • Dangerous dog (declared)
  • Dangerous dog (restricted breed)
  • Commercial security dog

Dangerous dog (declared)

An individual dog that has shown itself to be aggressive and is consequently declared to be a dangerous dog under Section 33E of the Dog Act 1976. It is important to remember a dog does not have to bite or injure to be declared dangerous. It may be for offences such as attacking or repeatedly rushing, threatening or chasing people or animals.

Dangerous dog (restricted breed)

A dog breed specifically bred for its aggression is known as a restricted breed.
Restricted breeds include:

• American Pit Bull Terrier and Pit Bull Terrier
• Dogo Argentino (Argentinean Fighting Dog)
• Fila Brasileiro (Brazilian Fighting Dog)
• Japanese Tosa
• Any dog of a mixed breed that visibly contains any of these breeds.

Commercial security dog

A dog that is kept primarily to guard or protect a commercial premise. A commercial security dog that is kept to demonstrate aggressive behaviour when actively working.

Owner responsibilities

Owners of dangerous dogs have additional responsibilities designed to increase community safety.

Owner responsibilities:

  1. Dog to wear prescribed collar.
  2. Property to display warning signs.
  3. Escape and child-proof fencing.
  4. Owner and/or person in charge of the dog must be over 18 years.
  5. Dangerous dogs to be microchipped.
  6. A maximum of two dangerous dogs per property. This includes properties located within the City’s kennel zone.
  7. Dangerous dogs to be held on a leash and muzzled at all times in public places.
  8. Before a person sells or transfers ownership of a dangerous dog to another person they must inform that person in writing that the dog is a dangerous dog.
  9. Compulsory sterilisation of restricted breed dogs.
  10. Compulsory notification to the local government A person liable for the control of a dangerous dog is to inform the local government in writing, as soon as practicable, after becoming aware that the dog is missing, died or has changed premises.


The City of Gosnells Rangers will conduct annual inspections of properties for dangerous dog owners to ensure compliance with the regulations. An order to seize a dangerous dog may be obtained for failure to comply with the regulations. The regulations apply to all dangerous dogs regardless of temperament or behavioural history.

More Information

Download: Dangerous dogs brochure