Police in Beijing have been confiscating large pet dogs, including golden retrievers, labradors, collies, and many other breeds according to an official notice. Regulations from 2003 [zh] that labeled these breeds as “vicious” sparked police action in Beijing in the past couple of weeks. Dismayed residents have posted viral videos online of police snatching their dogs [zh] while animal advocates say that a dog’s size does not determine its behavior, according to Andrew Jacobs in The New York Times. Jacobs reports:
The Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau did not respond to an interview request, but in public statements, the police have said they are simply enforcing the longstanding ban on dogs taller than 13.7 inches in the districts that make up the heart of the capital. Officials note that rabies last year killed 13 people in Beijing, more than double the number in 2011. Big dogs, the police contend, are incompatible with city living. “All resistance as well as violence against enforcement will be investigated and dealt with by the police,” they said in a statement.
The authorities appear to be so worried about a backlash that they have been deleting online criticism of the stepped-up enforcement. Last week they detained a woman who described how the police had kicked to death a golden retriever in front of its owner. The police later issued a statement saying the woman admitted to fabricating the account, a claim that has been met with widespread skepticism.
In addition to risking the seizure of offending dogs on the spot, owners can be fined $800, an amount that doubles if the owner is a business. Once confiscated, large dogs cannot be retrieved.[Source]