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Breed Specific Legislation Argumentation Regeling Agressieve Dieren (RAD)
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Jan Dirk van Ginneke - Tribute 2008

  Regeling Agressieve Dieren (RAD)

Regeling Agressieve Dieren (RAD)

The RAD, which roughly translates as "Arrangement for Aggressive Animals", is a policy directed towards alleged aggressive dog breeds of the "Pitbull Terrier type". The RAD has been implemented in the Netherlands in 1993; slight modifications were introduced in 2005 and eventually on the 9th of June 2008 it was dropped. The RAD strives to accomplish two main objectives:

1. To directly ascertain that dogs of the "Pitbull Terrier" breed would become extinct while indirectly making sure that dogs of the "Pitbull Terrier type" that do not belong to any of the registered breeds, were removed from human society (by extermination).

2. To prevent that existing dogs of the "Pitbull Terrier type" could cause harm to humans and/or animals.

The RAD is only valid for non-registered dogs, dogs of acknowledged breeds that are registered at the Dutch "Raad van Beheer" (the covering institute for the Dutch kennel club) are not subjected to it.

Pit-bull type dogs

On the basis of certain aspects of their appearance, it is determined whether a dog can be classified as a "Pit-bull type" dog. Among others, dogs are evaluated for the following characteristics: a powerful, muscular build; height at the withers of 35-50 cm (14-20 inches); a square head; pointy tail; and a short coat. Breeds which are recognized in Holland and correspond to the image sketched by these characteristics are especially, but not exclusively!, the American Staffordshire Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

Contents RAD

The RAD forbids the keeping and breeding of pitbull-type dogs. When a dog owner possesses a valid FCI (Federation Cynologique Internationale) pedigree, the RAD does not apply to his dog. Genuine pitbulls (American Pit Bull Terriers) can never be granted a FCI pedegree, since they are not recognizedby this institute as a breed. Pitbull-type dogs that were already owned before 1993 can only be kept when they are registered by the police and other relevant institutions and meet the required conditions (muzzling, castration and keeping them on a short leash).

For FCI recognized breeding, in the first place both parent dogs must have a valid FCI pedigree. Furthermore, for the American Staffordshire Terrier (not for the Staffordshire Bull Terrier), FCI pedigrees will only be granted to a litter of pups when both parent dogs have entered and passed a so-called MAG-test ("Maatschappelijk Aanvaardbaar Gedragstest", ) to ensure a stable temperament.

There were several variations in the regime, in terms of the breeds covered. In December 2000, the pitbull law would be extended. Not only the American Staffordshire Terrier was prohibited, but also the Dogo Argentino, Fila Brasileiro and the Mastino Napoletano would be prohibited. The Rottweiler was later added.

In October 2003 it was announced that the RAD as described above, would not run. The only breed that remained covered under the regime was the American Pitbull Terrier and "pitbull-like" (including the outward apparent also FCI-pedegreeless American Staffordshire Terrier and the FCI-pedegreeless Staffordshire Bull Terrier).


Dogs can be examined for the characteristics mentioned above when they reach an age of 6 months. When an animal falls under the RAD, it will be confiscated by the competent authorities, like the police and a more specialistic agency; the "Algemene Inspectie Dienst" (AID). Possession of a valid FCI pedigree can be recognized by the dog’s marking, which can be either a tattoo (before 1998) or a chip (after 1998).

When the concerning authorities identify that there is a lack of a valid FCI pedigree, the dog will be confiscated. The owner will be penalized, the penalty will be €120 at minimum. All further costs will be directed towards the owner. The dog will be examined by a so-called "schouwer", that is qualified to do so. When he assesses that the dog is indeed of the pitbull-type, it will normally be euthanized.


- For the RAD, animals are only judged on their appearance, temperament is not evaluated.

- Therefore, for crossbreeds, it is impossible to determine whether the RAD will be applicable to a pup before the age of 6 months is reached. When the pup develops the physical traits of his parent; that is not of the pitbull-type, it will not have to deal with RAD regulations, but when the pup looks similar to his pitbull-type parent it will. A dog with bad temperament that does not look like a pitbull is allowed, while a gentle, friendly pup that looks like its AST or SBT parent will be subjected to the RAD and will thus be destroyed in most cases. Additionally, crossbreeds of parent animals that do not look like a pitbul-type dog can generate pups that DO look like a pitbull-type and will thus automatically fall under the RAD. Examples of this are the Boxer X Greyhound and Pinscher X Mastiff-type crossbreeds.

The RAD law was dropped on the 9th of June in 2008, but other changes happened later, read all about it right here.

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