More than 188,000 people have backed Sir Patrick Stewart’s petition urging the Government to repeal the Dangerous Dogs Act.

The Mirfield-born Hollywood superstar has backed a petition demanding Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Michael Gove repeal the United Kingdom’s breed specific legislation.

The petition has been organised by Care2 which starts petitions and shares stories that inspire action.

The petition has now really taking off and is nearing the 200,000 mark with 52,000 of them from the UK.

Michael Gove
Michael Gove

The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 prohibits the ownership of certain types of dogs - in particular the pit bull terrier type - without specific permission from a court. Under the Act, pit bull terriers and several other types of dogs may not be owned, bought, sold, or even rehomed from rescue centres.

Earlier this year Sir Patrick Stewart announced to his fans that a foster dog named Ginger, who had been taken in to live with him and his wife Sunny Ozell in their Los Angeles home, would not be adopted by the couple because the UK - where they live for part of the year - does not allow pit bulls under the Dangerous Dogs Act.

Sir Patrick said: “It is essential that The Dangerous Dogs Act of 1991 be re-examined. Caring, good-natured creatures are being denied homes and their owners and potential owners deprived of a healthy and loving partnership.”

Care2 CEO and Founder Randy Paynter said: “There is no evidence that certain breeds are naturally more aggressive than others. Better policy would be to crack down on dog fighting and to institute a public awareness campaign on how to raise happy, gentle dogs.”