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Puppy breeding and trade

Border terrier puppy sitting in puppy farming kennel © RSPCA

We're pleased with the outcome of the Westminster debate held on Thursday, 4 September concerning the breeding and trade of puppies.

There was a recognition from MPs across all political parties that the issue is wide ranging and if legislation is to have an impact, it must tackle the root causes of the problems.

Many of the MPs highlighted different problems from breeding, through to dealing and trade. However Angela Smith MP explained it well when she said:

"If we are to respond effectively to problems with the breeding and sale of puppies and kittens, we need to take a comprehensive approach, because the challenges raised by the sale of puppies and kittens in pet shops represent only the tip of the iceberg in terms of concerns about animal welfare standards."

We echo this sentiment. That’s why we’re calling on MPs to focus on developing legislation which tackles the root causes of the problem - by cutting off the illegal trade and ensuring increased accountability and monitoring of anyone breeding puppies.

What we want for puppies and their Mums

The way that puppies are bred and sold like commodities with little or no regard for their future well being is unacceptable.

We’re calling for an overhaul of dog breeding legislation to protect both Mum and pups. Some of the things we’d like to see include:

  • A review of the 60 year old legislation and a significant improvement in minimum standards governing the breeding of dogs to both bring it in line with the modern world and the Animal Welfare Act.
  • For the responsibility of checking animals imported under PETS to be passed from ferry companies to a statutory border control agency. 
  • For local authorities to be allocated resources to be able to enforce breeding laws effectively.
  • For the government to push for an amendment to the European Commission's proposal for an Animal Health Law to ensure all commercial breeders and sellers would need to be registered.
  • The government to stop denying the escalating problem with illegal importation of puppies; to increase spot checks at our ports and begin capturing proper data on illegal imports.

Stop the puppy traders!

If your MP spoke in the debate, please thank them and join our calls to the government to ‘stop the puppy traders’!


Adopt a puppy

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