Dog Attacks (1638A/23)
I am writing to you under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act to request specific data related to dog attacks recorded by your force.
- Could you kindly confirm whether your force records dog attacks, as per section 3 of the Dangerous Dogs Act (DDA), as distinct offences in accordance with the National Crime Recording Standard (NCRS)?
- I would appreciate if you could provide a month-by-month breakdown of the number of attacks recorded from January 1, 2020, to the present date. The nearest month end data would be acceptable.
- In the aftermath of these recorded attacks, could you provide information on the number of dogs that were seized and subsequently assessed?
- Furthermore, I am interested in knowing the number of dogs that were destroyed as a result of an attack. If possible, could you differentiate between those destroyed at the scene and those destroyed in kennels?
- Could you confirm how many of the dogs that were destroyed were done so at the discretion of their owners?
- I would also like to inquire whether your force records the breed, sex, and age of the dogs reported or seized. If so, could you please provide this information?
- Lastly, does your force record whether the dog was an intact male or a spayed female? If this information is available, I would be grateful if you could share it.
Our data are not organised in such a way as to allow us to provide all this information within the appropriate (cost) limit within the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act (see ‘Reason for Decision’ below).
However, although excess cost removes the force’s obligations under the Freedom of Information Act, as a gesture of goodwill I have supplied information, relative to questions 1, 2, 3 and 4 of your request, retrieved before it was realised that the fees limit would be exceeded (see attached file 1638A_23_attachment.pdf). I trust this is helpful, but it does not affect our legal right to rely on the fees regulations for the remainder of the request.
REASON FOR DECISION
5, 6 and 7 – It is not possible to determine this information by way of electronic searches. Instead, we would need to manually go into and read through the case files. This however would involve a manual trawl of thousands of records and such a search for any one of these questions alone would far exceed the appropriate limit (FOIA, s.12).
This means that the cost of compliance with the whole of your request is above the amount to which we are legally required to respond, i.e. the cost of locating and retrieving the information would exceed the appropriate costs limit under section 12(1) of the FOI Act 2000. For West Midlands Police, the appropriate limit is set at £450, as prescribed by the Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004, S.I. 3244.
Further information on section 12 of FOI is available here: