Breaking News: Undercover Investigation Reveals Magnitude of Evil Puppy Smuggling Trade

The UK’s largest dog welfare charity is calling on the government to take urgent action to stop the illegal importation of puppies into the UK as Brexit approaches. This follows an undercover investigation, which exposes the magnitude and ease of trade routes into the UK for European smugglers.
 
Dogs Trust’s fourth report into this illegal trade is released with less than six months until the UK’s exit from the EU in order to highlight the significant opportunity the government has to redraw the UK’s pet travel rules [currently regulated by EU legislation] and end this cruel trade.
 
The findings continue to expose gaping loopholes in the existing Pet Travel Scheme (PETS), the rules of which changed in 2012 to allow puppies to enter the UK at a much younger age. Unscrupulous dealers have exploited this opportunity, and the demand for popular breeds such as French Bulldogs, Pugs, Dachshunds and English Bulldogs has led to an influx of puppies smuggled into the UK often in appalling conditions, from Central and Eastern Europe (see infographic below).
 
Dogs Trust has uncovered a network of corrupt breeders, dealers, and vets, who openly admit to breaking the law to deceitfully export puppies. The report also reveals the horrific ways in which puppies are smuggled into the UK. Findings include:
  • Puppies sedated in cramped conditions and forced into 30 hour journeys over 1,000 miles with little water and no toilet breaks, found hidden amongst their own faeces.
  • Heavily pregnant bitches caged in sickening conditions and forced to travel gruelling journeys to allow for the puppies to be born in the UK – young, ‘UK born’ puppies amount to quicker sales
  • Dealers claiming to evade border controls across Europe and describing the scale of illegal exportation; with one Hungarian dealer explaining around 400 puppies are exported each week from his hometown. This equates to 20,000 puppies a year providing an annual turnover of £28million based on the average sale price of £1,400 per puppy* – from just one town alone. These particular puppies were destined for Spain but are an example of the extent criminals are going to, to put profit over puppy welfare.
  • One dealer highlighted 300 bitches producing ‘designer’ puppies including French Bulldogs, some of which are then advertised and sold in the UK
  • Corrupt vets falsify passports and provide fake vaccination stamps to enable puppies to travel while they are younger than legally allowed, and therefore more desirable, but unprotected against diseases, such as rabies. Some vets were willing to supply sedatives to bring puppies across the UK border without detection with no passport at all.
  • New trade routes from Serbia, a non-EU country where more stringent rules of entry into the EU apply – we found evidence of underage puppies being sold with EU microchips and pre-filled European passports and passed off as EU-bred animals for easier entry into EU countries.
Paula Boyden, Veterinary Director of Dogs Trust, says:
 
“Our investigations have revealed shocking welfare conditions. There is no regard for the lives of these vulnerable puppies, who are subjected to gruelling journeys of more than 30 hours in hot, cramped and filthy conditions with no toilet breaks and very little water. Some don’t survive the journey, and those who do may have physical health and behavioural issues due to their poor start in life.
 
“Puppy smugglers are only concerned with making a profit, and the UK provides an attractive market because the high demand for fashionable breeds converts into fast internet sales. Importers are exploiting the lack of visual checks being made at the borders, and insufficient penalties for illegally importing puppies mean there is no real deterrent for these abhorrent crimes.
 
“With Brexit around the corner this is an opportunity of a lifetime to put robust measures in place that protect dogs and the public. We urge the government to take forward our clear recommendations to overhaul our pet travel legislation and increase the penalties for those caught fuelling this despicable trade.”
 
Dogs Trust is asking members of the public to contact their MP via the Dogs Trust website to help put an end to the cruel puppy smuggling trade. To find out more and contact your MP, visit www.puppysmuggling.org.uk
 
Undercover footage obtained in Hungary and Serbia demonstrating the scale of the puppy smuggling problem, the new trade routes and the use of pregnant bitches to bring underage puppies to the UK for sale to unsuspecting buyers:

 

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Timmy the Rescue Chihuahua Bounces Back After Surgery

Timmy the Chihuahua, who was rescued from a home with 37 other Chihuahuas, is fighting fit after surgery to his leg.

Timmy the Chihuahua, who had a painful genetic condition which left him struggling to walk, has successfully undergone surgery to his right leg to help fix his painful condition.The nine-month-old pup’s condition, called Luxated Patella or ‘floating kneecaps’, was the worst case his vet had ever seen and if left untreated his condition could be debilitating.

Despite this, Timmy is full of energy and personality and is recovering quickly after the operation on Thursday, October 4. He has already started to put weight on his leg and is looking stronger than ever.

Liz Wood, deputy manager at RSPCA Millbrook Animal Centre and Timmy’s fosterer, said: “He’s doing really well. He’s actually trying to use his leg and put weight on it. He’s on cage rest at the minute so we are just trying to keep him entertained so he doesn’t get too frustrated.

“On the first night when he came back after surgery, he couldn’t stand up at all. He looks a lot more comfortable and stronger now. Once he has recovered, he will then have surgery to his left leg to fix them both so he’s halfway there now!”

Dogs with this condition have a problem with the groove the kneecap sits in, normally it is too shallow. The vets have to operate and cut a wedge of bone in order to create a groove. In Timmy’s case, not only was there no groove but his bone actually stuck out instead of curving inwards.

The condition left poor Timmy walking bow-legged but in the long run, without surgery, it was likely to worsen and leave him in increasing pain.

Luxated Patella is usually apparent in the first two years of a dog’s life and symptoms can include occasional limping, an intermittent skip in the gait, sudden loss of support on the limb and an abnormal sitting posture with the knee placed outwards. It is usually a genetic malformation but can also be caused as a result of trauma. It is common in chihuahuas but a variety of dog breeds are also prone to the condition, especially smaller breeds such as the Yorkshire terrier and pomeranians.

Timmy was rescued by the RSPCA in March from a home in Surrey where there were 37 other Chihuahua and Chihuahua-crosses living under one roof. Since then, his life has changed considerably from meeting celebrity friends like Matt Johnson and Candice Brown to playtime and cuddles with his fosterer and best friend Buttercup, a fellow Chihuahua who has a less severe version of the condition and also recently had surgery.

The centre launched a funding appeal to pay for Timmy’s essential surgery and rehabilitation. There is still time to help fund Timmy’s surgery and after care, here:

https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/rspca-timmysappeal

 

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Do You Have a Special Home for Cassie, the Rescue Cavalier?

Do you have a special home filled with love for CASSIE, a rescue Cavalier King Charles Spaniel?

Cassie’s owner has dementia and is currently in hospital awaiting a place in a care home. Her two Cavalier friends have been re-homed but Cassie needs to have some teeth extracted first.

Cassie is 8 years old next month and has Heart Murmur (grade 3) and Scoliosis, neither of which seem to cause her problems / pain.

She is a lovely Cavalier who is eager to please, has a attentive nature, and loves people and other dogs. Ideally, to be re-homed with another neutered dog AND ideally in a home in the North East of England.

Cassie, who is currently in foster care in Bishop Auckland, is having her dental work done at the end of October, and so will be ready for re-homing after around Bonfire Night.

Genuine enquiries only please to [email protected] Please put ‘CASSIE’ in the subject line of your email. When enquiring, please include your name, telephone number and location.

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French Bulldog is Perfect Example of Problems Facing ‘Designer Dogs’

Poor Dobby was imported from Lithuania, sold on Gumtree, and ended up in RSPCA care needing major corrective surgery to help with breathing problems common in the breed.

Just like his Harry Potter namesake, little Dobby hasn’t had an easy life…

The 19-month-old French bulldog was imported from Lithuania as part of the lucrative but unscrupulous puppy trade, before being advertised online when his owners could no longer keep him.

He was bought by a concerned member of the public worried about what would happen to him and brought to the RSPCA. Dobby is now being cared for at RSPCA Mount Noddy Animal Centre, in Chichester.

Animal centre manager Susan Botherway said: “Dobby was bought off Gumtree by a member of public who was worried he would end up in the wrong hands.

“He couldn’t keep him so brought him to us at the end of August. His passport shows he was born in Lithuania.”

RSPCA staff suspect that the little French bulldog was bred in eastern Europe destined for the lucrative puppy trade in the UK where fashionable, designer breeds such as Pugs and Frenchies can sell for hundreds or thousands of pounds.

Unfortunately for the young dog, when his owners could no longer keep him they took to the online classified sites to try to find him a new home. But the lucky little dog is now receiving all the TLC he needs with staff and volunteers at the centre, run by the Sussex, Chichester & District Branch.

As with many puppies imported from abroad and sold on here – particularly those brachycephalic or ‘flat-faced’ breeds such as French bulldogs – Dobby is plagued with health problems.

Susan added: “When he arrived he was really struggling to breathe. He was rushed to the vets where he was given medication to ease his laboured breathing.

“He was also treated for ‘cherry eye’ (a painful condition affecting the membrane or ‘third eyelid’ in a dog’s eye) and ear infections. He was also very underweight, lethargic and particularly weak. He wasn’t able to walk far and didn’t want to eat anything.”

Dedicated staff had to roll his food into small balls and hand feed him every two hours to build up his strength.

Dobby has since had costly surgery to help tackle his breathing and eating problems, caused by brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (or BOAS).

BOAS is a complex respiratory disease related to the flat face and skull shape of brachycephalic dogs. Dogs with BOAS can suffer from breathing problems and can have trouble coping with heat and exercise.

Susan added: “The operation was to open his nostrils and trim his soft palate, creating more space for the air to flow and make it easier for him to breathe.

“It’s cost us around £3,000 in vet fees so far and means, in the future, he won’t be insurable for any of these health issues.


“It just goes to show the price of poor breeding – not only for the dog but also for the owner who is left to foot these extremely high bills.”

Dobby is currently in foster care with a staff member while he recovers from his surgery.

The RSPCA’s veterinary clinics are also seeing more dogs who require similar surgery due to BOAS. Earlier this month, the charity’s Southall Clinic in London carried out the same operation on French bulldog Mickey.

RSPCA dog welfare expert Lisa Hens said: “Sadly we’re seeing more and more dogs in veterinary clinics and surgeries across the country needing surgery to try to correct health problems which have been caused due to the way they’ve been selectively bred for exaggerated features.

“Dobby and Mickey are perfect examples of how the selective breeding of dogs has, over the years, created dogs who can now no longer function as happy, healthy dogs.

“Brachycephalic breeds like French bulldogs, pugs and Pekingese very often struggle to walk and run due to their difficulty in breathing because they’ve been bred to have such short noses and flat faces that they’ve often been left with very restricted nostrils and airways.

“Unfortunately, we’re also seeing the effects of the surge in popularity in certain ‘designer’ breeds like Frenchies. This has created the perfect opportunity for unscrupulous breeders and dealers to produce puppies on an intensive scale or to import from abroad – putting profits ahead of the health and welfare of the dogs – before selling them on to unsuspecting members of the public who later often face serious health and behavioural problems in their dogs.”

The RSPCA is part of the UK Brachycephalic Working Group – a coalition of animal welfare and veterinary organisations, researchers and breeder representatives working to improve the health and welfare of flat-faced dogs.

The charity is also urging members of the public to consider rescuing a dog instead of buying a puppy. If buying, the public should use the Puppy Contract to help them buy a happy, healthy dog.

For more information about rehoming Dobby please call 07395 792891 or email [email protected].

To help the RSPCA continue its vital work please donate by visiting www.rspca.org.uk/give. To help the Sussex, Chichester & District Branch please donate by visiting www.rspca.org.uk/local/sussex-chichester-and-district-branch/help.

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SPONSORED POST: Dog-friendly Cottages in Fowey: Cornwall’s Undiscovered Gem

It’s no secret that the United Kingdom is a nation of dog-lovers. Now more than ever, pet-friendly households are on the lookout for equally pet-friendly holiday destinations. With no intention of leaving these important family members behind, it’s a case of all for one, one for all…so to speak.

Unsurprisingly therefore, growing demand for dog-friendly cottages across Cornwall is transforming the way Brits book their holidays. In response, some of the better accommodation providers are offering all manner of pet-friendly options to suit families and groups of all shapes and sizes.

It’s simply a case of choosing the right place!

Where to Stay?

In terms of places to stay Estuary Cottages in Fowey have become firm favourites among dog owners across the UK. These stunning and perfectly situated cottages are all about delivering that quintessential home-from-home experience. All the comforts and conveniences you’d expect from home, a prime location in one of Cornwall’s most gorgeous towns and the kind of pet-friendly policy you’d expect these days.

Fowey itself is also a dream come true for dog owners and their pets. The town presents a labyrinth of quaint and quiet cobbled streets, which makes for a wonderful afternoon’s exploration. The quay down by the estuary is a hive of activity day and night, while the nearby beaches are beautiful throughout the year. And of course, the fact that Fowey is right on the doorstep of some of Cornwall’s most beautiful countryside is simply the icing on the cake. Whether heading out for a weekend or an extended stay, you and your pet are guaranteed the time of your life in Fowey.

Further Afield

If you plan on exploring Cornwall a little further afield, there are a handful of dog-friendly places that top the table among those in the know. It’s worth remembering that if planning to hit the beach, not all beaches in Cornwall have a dog-friendly policy. In fact, quite a lot of them restrict animals entirely.

One notable exception to the rule is Beachview, which combines the classic Cornish seaside experience with a comprehensively dog-friendly policy. The beach itself is 4 miles long, meaning you’ll always find plenty of room for the whole family at even the busiest times. The waters are also perfect for swimming throughout the warmer months of the year.

If time permits, it’s also worth heading over to Cadgwith Cove. This gorgeous stretch of quaint and quiet coves flanked by a traditional fishing village really is a sight to behold. Cadgwith Cove is predominantly seasonal and things slow to a crawl from the late autumn, but this only adds to the peace and tranquillity of the place.

For anyone planning to indulge in a spot of surfing, Constantine Bay is not only one of the most popular surfing spots in the region, it’s also a dog-friendly beach. The amenities are fantastic and there are no restrictions on dogs being brought to the beach at any time of year.

A Bite to Eat

You probably won’t struggle to find a pet-friendly pub in Cornwall – these folks tend to take an accommodating approach to all members of the family.  Nevertheless, there’s one particular highlight on the map between Falmouth and Truro, in the form of Café Mylor.  

For one thing, the location is gorgeous – perched prominently with pretty views of the marina, along with enchanting gardens on all sides. Not only this, but they also have a fabulous menu of local delights throughout the day and evening. Not to mention, complementary water bowls and biscuits for your guest of honour!

Another place renowned for its dog-friendly policy is the Hayle Cornwall pub, which again boasts a truly idyllic setting and is also a great place to try some of the best local ales on offer.

Something Special

Last up, it would be a shame for any visitor to Cornwall to leave without first checking out the spectacular Eden Project. Unsurprisingly, the Biomes themselves have a relatively strict entry policy when it comes to who (and what) can and cannot enter. Nevertheless, the surrounding open spaces are comprehensively open to guests and their pets alike. All of which makes for an unforgettable outing for the whole family.

Once again, Cornwall as a whole represents one of the most idyllic destinations in the UK for pet-friendly families. Just be sure to base yourself in one of the dog-friendly cottages the county has to offer – Estuary Cottages in Fowey coming highly recommended!

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Videos: Tips for Managing Stress in Your Dog

We all experience stress and anxiety at certain stages of our life, but not everyone appreciates that our four-legged family members are just as vulnerable to the effects of it as we are.

Our dogs can’t express themselves by taking a time out, slamming a door or sitting down for a good chat with us, so it’s important that we pay attention to their behaviour and emotional state so you can support them in the right way.

As part of their ongoing work in supporting pet owners, Lintbells have put together some useful animations and a few tips on triggers of stress and anxiety in your canine companion.

If your dog shows anxiety in any of these situations, it’s best to provide them with extra support by using a natural supplement like YuCALM Dog alongside behavioural training techniques. YuCALM Dog contains scientifically proven ingredients to reduce anxiety and help pets to feel more relaxed without sedating. It is safe and effective to use as both long and short term aid.

Leaving your dog home alone

Dogs aren’t known as ‘man’s best friend’ for nothing – they are social creatures and love being around us, so it’s normal for them to feel stressed or anxious when they’re left on their own. It’s important to teach your dog to feel confident and relaxed about being home alone from a young age. You can do this by encouraging your pooch to spend more time in their comfort place, be it the bed or the garden when you are engaged in another activity, and changing their association with being left alone by introducing interactive toys, chews or treats to this environment to distract them.

It’s always a good idea to slowly increase the time you are away from your pet. Start with very short periods, such as spending more time in your room and then gradually build up the length of time you are away, making sure they are relaxed and happy throughout the process with positive reinforcement and rewards.

Encountering other dogs

While most dog’s will naturally get along with each other, there may be some who will find it more difficult than others, potentially experiencing some nervousness or unease when meeting other dogs. This may be caused by various factors including genetics, lack of early socialisation and past traumatic experiences.

If a canine becomes stressed in this situation they will often flatten their ears, yawn and lick their lips. They may also pant continuously, even if it’s a cooler day, have a tucked tail, or even in some instances raise their hackles and become aggressive.

Socialising your dog is the best way to help them become accustomed to novel experiences. Meeting new dogs, people and learning how to interact with inanimate objects like cars, horns and bikes can help ease your pet into unfamiliar circumstances.

 

Visiting the vets

On a normal day, jumping into the car is a happy and exciting experience for your pet, but getting them through the vet’s door can be another story altogether. This is often due to past experiences forming a negative association for your dog when taking a trip to the vet.

To help your pet remain calm when visiting the vet preparation is key – taking your dog for regular trips in the car to do something fun such as a walk, especially to the area where the vets is, will help to change that negative association. Similarly, by regularly handling and checking your pet it will become less scary once they reach the examination table. On the day of your visit, make sure to drive sensibly with plenty of ventilation in the car and keep them on a short lead in the waiting room – if the waiting room is full or causing added anxiety let the practice receptionist know and often you will be allowed to wait outside until your appointment is called.

Firework season

While many of us look forward to the cooler weather and brightly coloured leaves of Autumn, for those with nervous pets it is a dread to know that fireworks season is just around the corner. Some dogs can react to loud and unexpected noises and owners will need to plan ahead to keep their pet safe.

Acclimatising your dog to noises prior to the big night is always a good idea, or make a safe den for your dog to retreat to if they feel scared. During the fireworks, you can distract your dog from the noise by having the TV or the radio switched on, and make sure to close the curtains so they can’t see the flashing lights as easily.

Strangers can be a trigger

A dog’s fear of strangers must be handled carefully as all dogs react differently when they are afraid. Never force your pet to accept handling from a stranger and allow them to approach unfamiliar visitors on their own terms.

Regardless of the situation, it’s important to remain patient and ensure you are taking all the safety precautions to keep your pet healthy and happy. Lintbells YuCALM Dog is an effective way to help reduce stress with results in 4-6weeks of use. What’s more, it’s all natural – so you can use it every day to get more out of life together.

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World-First Heart Surgery Saves Puppy’s Life

Lottie

Surgeons from the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) have successfully carried out the surgical repair of a complex combination of heart defects in a dog.  The abnormalities required tricuspid valve repair surgery along with the repair for the common atrium. It is the first time these procedures have been carried out on a dog.

Lottie, an 11-month-old Labrador puppy appeared full of life with no problems until her owners took her to the local vets to be spayed. During a routine check before this procedure a very loud heart murmur was heard. A heart ultrasound revealed that Lottie had several defects in her heart, which she had been born with (congenital).

The two major ones were a malformation of her tricuspid valve, which is the valve that sits on the right side of the heart to regulate flow between the right filling chamber (atrium) and pumping chamber (ventricle), and the second a very large defect between the left and right filling chambers or atria, known as a “common atrium”.

Lottie was referred to the RVC’s cardiothoracic department for further evaluation and to see if there was anything that could be done to help her. The team, which is led by Dan Brockman, Professor of Small Animal Surgery, is notable for performing several cutting-edge surgeries, including a world-first treatment to save the life of a dog born with a malformed tricuspid valve.

Lottie underwent further heart ultrasound using 3D technology as well as a CT scan. Repair of the tricuspid valve has only been performed a handful of times and has not been done at the same time as repair of a common atrium.

Lottie’s owners decided to proceed with a surgical correction in order to try and help extend Lottie’s otherwise limited life and to preserve a good quality of life. This operation was undertaken on July 30th. Lottie had her heart stopped to perform the complex repair and her circulation to the rest of the body was maintained with the use of a heart lung machine run by a perfusionist from Great Ormond Street Hospital (Nigel Cross).

Commenting on the surgery and the number of different practitioners involved to help Lottie, Poppy Bristow, Fellow in Cardiothoracic Surgery at the RVC, said: “Altogether 10 people were involved in her operation and many more for her care before and after surgery, including veterinary specialists, veterinary nurses and veterinary specialists-in-training from surgery, cardiology, anaesthesia and emergency and critical care, as well as Lottie’s referring cardiologist and her local veterinary practice.

“Lottie’s heart was stopped for an hour and a half, with the whole operation taking four hours. Her malformed tricuspid valve was released by cutting its abnormal attachments and artificial chords using Gore-Tex material were placed. Her single atrium was then divided into two using a large patch of Gore-Tex. Lottie has made a good recovery so far and was walking around and eating from the day after her surgery. She was discharged back to her owners after six days and has continued to thrive at home.”

Professor Brockman added: “In Lottie, we had a young energetic dog with such a serious and life-limiting heart condition, that we were desperate to try and help her. The repair was complex but incorporated a combination of surgical manoeuvres that we had done before. With careful pre-operative planning and using our previous experience, we were able to design and execute the surgical treatment. It is still ‘early days’ but the initial signs suggest that Lottie is going to enjoy an excellent quality of life, following this operation and, we all hope, a normal lifespan.”

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Battersea Dogs & Cats Home Urges Scottish Government to Take Action on Animal Cruelty

Battersea is calling on the Government to prioritise tougher animal cruelty sentences as a matter of urgency to deter potential offenders and reflect the Scottish public’s view that animal cruelty is not acceptable.

The leading animal welfare charity welcomes Ministers’ renewed commitment to tougher animal cruelty sentences in this week’s Programme for Government (PfG), but is calling on politicians to make this long overdue animal welfare change a matter of top priority. 

MSPs joined Battersea Dogs & Cats Home and the Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform, Roseanna Cunningham MSP, outside Holyrood. © Warren Media 2017. 

Battersea’s Chief Executive Claire Horton said: “We’re very pleased that the Scottish Government has reaffirmed their commitment to tougher sentences for animal cruelty in today’s Programme. We hope they’ll make good on this commitment to animal welfare by putting legislation for five-year sentences before Parliament as soon as possible           

“The Westminster Government recently finalised a consultation on raising the maximum sentence for animal cruelty and have committed to bring in tougher sentences in the next few months. We hope to see Scotland match this commitment, so we’ll see five-year maximum sentences across the UK.”

Battersea has been campaigning for England, Wales and Scotland to increase the maximum sentence for animal cruelty to five years – in line with Northern Ireland. This campaign has been backed by almost 50 MSPs. 

It’s now a year since MSPs and MPs from across the political spectrum gathered outside Holyrood to show their support for Battersea’s campaign for tougher animal cruelty sentences, yet legislation to make this a reality has not yet come before Parliament. Battersea is calling on the Government to ensure this happens before another year passes.

Scotland has among the lowest sentences for animal cruelty in Europe, the United States and Australia. Only a few nations, including England and Wales have lower sentences.

 Horrific animal cruelty and neglect cases have continued to make the news throughout the past year.

These include an Ayr man who was given just four months in prison for beating a Golden Retriever and throwing it against a wall and a couple in Banff a who were given only a five-year ban on owning pets and a £1,200 fine after starving their cat. By the time it was found, the cat was so emaciated it had to be put down.  

Claire Horton adds: “Cases like these show the true cost of animal cruelty. Raising the maximum sentence for these crimes will act as a deterrent and send a clear message that this kind of behaviour will not be tolerated in Scotland.”

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has also pledged her support for Finn’s Law, which will raise the maximum sentences for attacks on service animals – a move which is supported by Battersea.

For more information on Battersea’s campaign to increase the maximum sentence for animal cruelty, visit www.battersea.org.uk/NotFunny.

 Battersea’s report, Sentencing for Animal Cruelty in Scotland, can be found here.

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Changes to Breeding Regulations in England

As of October 2018 new breeding regulations are being introduced in England by Defra and the Kennel Club is providing information to its customers on how some of these changes will effect dog breeders and some of those involved with dogs.

The main legislative changes being made are:

  • A breeding licence will be required for anyone breeding three or more litters and selling at least one puppy in a 12 month period. This is a reduction from the previous litter test of five or more litters.
  • A licence is not required if documentary evidence can be provided that none of the puppies or adult dogs have been sold.
  • Anyone in the business of selling dogs (even one or two litters in a 12 month period) may require a licence. This is not new and has been in place since 1999. The Government provides guidance on what local authority inspectors should consider when assessing whether a breeder meets the business test.
  • A new star rating system is being introduced based on welfare conditions and breeding history which has been designed to reward high performing breeding establishments and to give further help to puppy buying public in identifying good breeders.

Further examples are provided within the Government’s guidance document “The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018, Guidance notes for conditions for breeding dogs” which can be found onwww.cfsg.org.uk under the legislation and guidance tab. There is also further information on the Kennel Club website https://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/breeding/dog-breeding-regulation/.

As well as changes to the breeding regulations, revisions have been made to the licensing regime for boarding kennels, home boarders and day boarding establishments. The same star rating system will be implemented for these businesses. The performing animal regulations have been amended and are now only applicable to those in the business of keeping or training animals for educational or entertainment purposes. The exemption for those keeping or training animals solely for military, police or sporting purposes has been maintained.

For further information and to see a full list of FAQ’s please see the Kennel Club website https://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/breeding/dog-breeding-regulation/. To see the full Defra report please go to http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2018/486/pdfs/uksi_20180486_en.pdf

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We’re 2nd in Top 10 Online Pet Magazines – Globally!

We’re delighted to be awarded 2nd position in a global league table of top online pet magazines by Feedspot, the global tracker of social influence.

The awards were judged by an expert panel, who looked at each blog’s Google reputation, their influence and popularity on social media, as well as the quality and consistency of content.

A huge thanks to Anuj and the team at Feedspot!

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