New hunting law – dogs have to be on a leash in Zurich’s forests – News


Up to 100 wild animals are killed by dogs in the canton of Zurich every year. Leashes are now compulsory in spring.

  • Up to 100 wild animals are killed by dogs in the canton of Zurich every year.
  • The new hunting law provides for a leash obligation from April to the end of July.
  • It applies in the said time in the forest and at the edge of the forest.

Roland Krienbühl is the game warden responsible for the Maur district. Always out and about with his hunting dog Yago, Krienbühl has been informing dog owners about the new leash requirement since the beginning of the year. He distributes leaflets and wants to make sure that by April at the latest, all affected people know that they can no longer let their dogs run free everywhere.

Deer are bitten to death

The new regulation was included in the hunting law by the Canton of Zurich because the number of killed wild animals – such as deer – is consistently high. Krienbühl knows such cases from his own area. Last summer, for example, he discovered a dead roebuck. Bite marks indicated a dog.

It is difficult for me to understand that nobody intervened.

Such incidents make Krienbühl sad and at a loss: “It is difficult for me to understand that nobody is there to intervene or to report it when a dog is away and fighting for so long.” The animal had to suffer torments. The leash requirement is now intended to ensure that wild animals are less disturbed, at least while they are giving birth to their young.


The new law aims to provide better protection for deer during the breeding and settling season.

Keystone / Georgios Kefalas

Dog boom in the canton of Zurich

In Switzerland, more and more people are fulfilling their dream of owning a dog. The canton of Zurich is at the top with the most dogs. In December 2022, the number of dogs kept as pets was almost 70,000 for the first time. Impressive: The number of registered dogs has increased by 17 percent over the past five years.

Many dog ​​owners encountered by the Krienbühl game warden show understanding for the new restriction. For example Claudia Pizzirani, who owns a small dog: “Of course it’s more pleasant to let the dog off the leash. But the law applies to everyone, so you have to comply.”

dog on a leash.


No matter how big or small a dog is: in the canton of Zurich, all dogs must now be on a leash from April 1 to July 31 in the forest and up to 50 meters outside the forest.

Keystone / Sigi Tischler

A fine is threatened

If someone lets their own dog run free in the forest or at the edge of the forest even after the leash obligation has come into force, the game wardens are also authorized to impose fines. It would cost 60 francs. In any case, Roland Krienbühl wants to first seek dialogue and, if possible, avoid a fine.

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