What Dogs Need to Be Muzzled in Ireland?
What Dogs Need to Be Muzzled in Ireland?
May 28, 2024
2 minutes to read

What Dogs Need to Be Muzzled in Ireland?

Ireland has specific regulations concerning the control and management of certain dog breeds. These regulations aim to ensure public safety and responsible dog ownership. If you own or plan to own a dog in Ireland, it’s crucial to be aware of these rules, particularly concerning the requirement for muzzling. This article provides an overview of the breeds that need to be muzzled in public and other essential details.

The Control of Dogs Regulations

The Control of Dogs Regulations 1998 set out the rules for dog ownership in Ireland. Among these rules is the requirement for certain breeds, classified as "restricted breeds," to be muzzled and leashed when in public places. The breeds listed under these regulations are considered to have the potential to be more dangerous if not properly managed.

Restricted Breeds in Ireland

The following breeds (and their crossbreeds) are classified as restricted in Ireland and must be muzzled and leashed in public:

  1. American Pit Bull Terrier
  2. Bull Mastiff
  3. Doberman Pinscher
  4. English Bull Terrier
  5. German Shepherd (Alsatian)
  6. Japanese Akita
  7. Japanese Tosa
  8. Rhodesian Ridgeback
  9. Rottweiler
  10. Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  11. Ban Dog (a term for any dog that is a cross of the above breeds)

Muzzling and Leashing Requirements

Owners of these restricted breeds must adhere to the following requirements:

Responsible Dog Ownership

Adhering to these regulations is not only a legal obligation but also a responsibility towards ensuring the safety of the community. Owners of restricted breeds should also consider additional measures such as proper training and socialization to mitigate any potential risks.

Penalties for Non-Compliance

Failing to comply with the Control of Dogs Regulations can result in significant penalties, including fines and, in severe cases, confiscation of the dog. It's important for dog owners to understand these rules thoroughly and adhere to them to avoid legal issues and ensure the well-being of their pets.


Owning a dog comes with many responsibilities, and understanding the specific legal requirements in your area is crucial. In Ireland, owners of certain dog breeds must take additional precautions, including muzzling and leashing, to comply with the Control of Dogs Regulations. By doing so, they help maintain a safe environment for everyone and promote responsible pet ownership.

For more detailed information, you can refer to the official Irish Statute Book which outlines all regulations related to dog control in Ireland.

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