Feldwick and Adamson v HMA 2018

Ms Feldwick and Ms Adamson and their families have successfully appealed against the order to put their two dogs to death. The dogs were sentenced to death by the Court for being “dangerously out of control.”

The Rottweiler and the Staffordshire bull terrier are now safe after ruling that the sheriff erred in ruling that the animals posed a danger to public safety. The two women both pled guilty to a contravention of section 3(1) of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 last year.

In Ms Feldwick’s case her dog injured a greyhound and its owner. She was previous served with a with a dog control notice which ordered her to keep her dog on leash and to put a muzzle on her. It was heard that Ms Feldwick was suffering from cancer and could not take the dog to training but the summary sheriff ultimately ordered the destruction of the dog.

This was argued to be excessive and not justified given the other courses that had been open to the sheriff, namely, the imposition of a contingent destruction order. A similar situation has occurred with Ms Adamson and the dog was sentenced to be put down on the basis of the owners criminal justice social work report.

Lord Turnbull concluded that the sentence was excessive in both cases. Contingent destruction orders were applied in both cases and the dogs death sentences were quashed.