Protection dog training

Dog on leash with owner at protection trainingProtection training is defined as training a dog to attack people. It includes the training of a dog to attack a human wearing padded protective clothing for any purpose, including sport.

It is not appropriate for a member of the community to have access to an attack trained dog, unless they are a licenced security guard. This is reflected in the strict provisions of the Domestic Animals Act.

Dogs that have received this type of training are automatically Dangerous Dogs under the Act.

Licensed security guards

Licensed security guards registered under the Private Agents Act 1966 (now superseded by the Private Security Act 2004) are the only persons eligible to have their dogs trained as Protection Dogs, or to be trained in Protection Training.

Proof of Security Licence must be shown to the training establishment prior to the start of Protection Training.

A member of the public cannot be trained in protection training without these requirements.

Eligible dogs

A dog must be at least 12 months before protection training is allowed.

The only breeds allowed to be trained in protection training are:

  • recognised guarding breeds of the large variety
  • cross breeds of these.

Specific breeds are:

  • German Shepherd
  • Rottweiler
  • Doberman
  • other breeds recognised by Dogs Victoria as 'large guarding breeds'.

Council notification

An owner must notify the appropriate council immediately when attack training has begun.

Dangerous dogs

Dogs that have been trained to attack are dangerous dogs. Owners will be required to adhere to prescribed conditions (find more information on dangerous dogs or contact your council for details).

This includes:

  • clear identification of the dog
  • methods of restraint that will protect the community.
Page last updated: 13 Jul 2021