Vets should be required to inform authorities whenever they treat a restricted breed dog, says a lawyer for the family of a Melbourne girl mauled to death by a pitbull.
The submission to an inquest conducted by the Victorian Coroners Court by the family of four-year-old Ayen Chol is supported by the Brimbank City Council in whose area the attack took place in August 2011.
It was not opposed by the government department that regulates dogs in Victoria.
Brimbank Council did not know about the existence of the dog which savaged Ayen to death at St Albans in northwest Melbourne because it had never been registered, the inquest heard.
Had it been registered, the dog would have been subject to strict fencing requirements.
A barrister for Ayen's family, Adam Hill, told the inquest that vets were the people who had access to restricted breed dogs.
"We would submit that there ought to be some sort of compulsory reporting of non-compliance with the act," Mr Hill said in his final submission to the inquest.
Brimbank Council barrister John Constable agreed, saying vets should be under a legally enforceable obligation to report details of dangerous dogs and their owners to council.
Sandip Mukerjea, for the Department of Primary Industries, said there would likely be opposition to the proposal from groups representing the interests of vets.
He also suggested that people might be discouraged from taking their dogs to the vet if there was mandatory reporting.
But he said those matters did not militate against mandatory reporting.
Mr Hill also called for a specific penalty for people who breed restricted breed dogs.
A gap in the legislation had allowed 15 "what we would loosely describe as loaded guns out in our community", he said.
Zlate Lazarovski, who gave the dog that attacked Ayen to its owner Nick Josevski, told the inquest that the dog's mother had given birth to 15 puppies in two pregnancies.
Both pregnancies were sired by the same dog - the father of the animal which attacked Ayen.
Vaccination cards for the puppies stated they were American pitbulls, the court heard.
Mr Lazarovski said neither of the dog's parents was a pitbull.
He also denied being a breeder.
"I am not a breeder. I haven't had time to be a breeder. It just happened," he said.
Mr Lazarovski said he paid $50 for each puppy to get them vaccinated and then gave them away "free to a good home".
Coroner Kim Parkinson is to deliver her finding at a date to be fixed.
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