Can someone buy and use tasers

Legal question of the day:

Pepper spray is freely available in Germany. So can you just buy a pepper spray and have it in your pocket? Or are there any restrictions on use?


Some people feel uncomfortable when they are out and about at night. It may feel good to be able to defend yourself against attackers with pepper spray in an emergency. But if you armed yourself with pepper spray, you should look carefully.

Animal repellent spray does not fall under the Weapons Act

Most weapons and weapon-like objects in Germany fall under the Weapons Act. If you want to buy and own a weapon, you have to follow strict rules. Pepper spray, on the other hand, can simply be bought and carried with you under certain conditions. Because pepper spray actually does not fall under the gun law.

Provided it bears the inscription: "For animal defense". Similar terms are also allowed. If the packaging is not labeled as an animal repellent spray or similar, the spray falls under the Weapons Act.

In addition, the Range of the pepper spray should not be more than 2 meters. Then you do not have to observe any restrictions. But even an over-the-counter spray shouldn't be used lightly.

Allowed for protection

For animal defense, the use of pepper spray is only for Self-defense or Emergency aid permissible. If you or someone else are attacked by a dog, for example, you can use the spray for defense.

Annoyed by a dog who regularly waters your manicured lawn? Then leave your fingers off the pepper spray. Otherwise you are liable to prosecution for damage to property and violation of the Animal Welfare Act.

Pepper spray against people

Even if the spray is only sold as a defense against animals: If you are attacked by a person, you can basically reach for the pepper spray. The same applies here as if you defend yourself with a stick or stone in the event of an attack. But be careful: only if one imminent danger exists for your body or your life, you may defend yourself with impunity. Or when you want to protect another person who is facing such an attack. If there is no danger, you can be because of dangerous bodily harm make it punishable.

Mild means

The law also obliges you to always use the mildest means. And therein lies the danger. If, for example, you can attack an attacker with an umbrella, the use of pepper spray would be disproportionate. In addition, it can be difficult to use pepper spray to ward off an attacker. Especially when you are in a panic, a so-called quickly occurs Emergency excess. Even then, you are often not allowed to be convicted. However, you have to put up with an unpleasant preliminary investigation and, if in doubt, a court hearing.

Only in emergency

If you decide to buy a pepper spray, keep the following in mind: The purchase and possession of a labeled spray is only permitted for animal protection. So just apply the spray in real emergencies at. This applies to attacks by animals as well as threats from humans. Just because an admirer becomes a nuisance to you doesn't mean you should react immediately with pepper spray. If possible, use another means of self-defense, even in an emergency. If there is no other way, use the spray in moderation. And who knows: maybe just knowing about the spray can will help you to appear confident and deter attackers from the outset.