The ACT Opposition will introduce a bill to make it easier to punish the owners of dogs that attack people or pets after two serious maulings in one weekend.
The Canberra Liberals are drafting legislation to make it much tougher and more expensive to own a dangerous dog amid what they described as government inaction.
Urban services spokesman Steve Doszpot said the bill would clarify when a dog could be declared dangerous or seized and write into law the victim's right to be kept informed of the process.
While city services minister Meegan Fitzharris earlier this month flagged upcoming changes to domestic animal laws, Mr Doszpot said the government continued to double-down on the line existing dangerous dog laws were "adequate".
He said their response indicated they did not fully understand the impact of medical bills and property damage on dog attack victims.
"We want the owners of dogs to realise they have a responsibility in owning a dog," Mr Doszpot said.
"If the dog you have attacks another dog or a person there's got to be some recognition of that. You're responsible for the dog, you've got to handle the dog safely and if anything happens you're liable for the physical damage and the property damage that occurs. The onus is on them. If their dog attacks, they have to wear the responsibility for that."
Mr Doszpot's bill comes after two vicious dog attacks in quick succession.
On August 5, two puppies survived a vicious mauling from three large dogs that jumped the fence of their Wanniassa backyard by crawling into the laundry via their dog flap.
When asked if it was fair to increase fines and fees, given the disproportionate impact on people on a low income, Mr Doszpot said many people who were the victims of dog attacks couldn't afford it either.
"If the government feels people can't afford to pay the penalties, my question is are we developing a group that is immune to responsibility in the community? Is that what we're doing?" Mr Doszpot said.
"What are they doing to protect people who can't afford the medical bills? If they're protecting one part of the community, saying it has financial implications, what about the other part of that same community who then can't afford the medical bills yet they have to because their children are at stake?
"I'm not anti-dog, my kids have had dogs, I'm not trying to crack down on dog ownership, I'm simply trying to underline the fact you still have a responsibility."
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