The licensing of animal-related establishments, e.g. pet shops, dog and cat boarding kennels, riding schools, etc. is the responsibility of the local authority. If you are concerned about the conditions animals are being kept in, you should contact your local council to raise the matter.
To avoid getting caught out by puppy traffickers, the RSPCA advises that people who want to buy a puppy should:
- Always see a puppy with its mother in the place where it was bred. If the breeder can’t show you the mother, be suspicious. Ideally, you need to see the father too.
- Check vaccination details carefully. Vaccination cards are easy to fake – if the vet’s contact details are not visible or include an address outside the UK, the vaccination card could be a fake.
- Bear in mind that pedigree certificates are never a guarantee for the condition of your puppy. They may not even mean you are being sold a pure-bred puppy.
- Never buy a puppy just because you feel sorry for it - doing so will just encourage the breeder to continue trading. Anyone who has already purchased a sick puppy is also advised to contact Consumer Direct on 08454 040506 or to visit their website for information.