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Harrow residents will now need specific permission to own dogs and the council may ban them from having certain breeds.

The Times is reporting that Harrow council could evict tenants if they are found to have dangerous dogs. The dogs will also be given microchips to better survey them.

Owners of the so-called “weapon dogs” or ‘status dogs’ could be refused council housing. Existing tenants face council checks to ensure the dogs, increasingly used as weapons and appearing in cases of violence, are not causing problems to other residents.

This follows the case in November in Liverpool where a four-year-old boy was killed in an attack by an illegal pitbull; it was one of many such cases in recent years.

Councillor Susan Hall said breed is irrelevant to the plans, as decisions would be made on case by case basis. However she said crossbreeds were the main concern.

She said: “Young men are aware that they face five years’ imprisonment for carrying a knife — but they can buy a dog, use it as a weapon, and there’s no penalty at all. We need to ensure the safety of everyone who lives on our estates.”

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