An updated report on dog breeding issues, which calls for the tightening of dog breeding legislation in England and claims the licensing requirement should be reduced to three or more litters, has been welcomed by the BVA.

An updated report on dog breeding issues, which calls for the tightening of dog breeding legislation in England and claims the licensing requirement should be reduced to three or more litters, has been welcomed by the British Veterinary Association (BVA).
Updated APGAW report: A Healthier Future for Pedigree Dogs
The Associate Parliamentary Group for Animal Welfare (APGAW) released the 2012 update of its report, entitled A Healthier Future for Pedigree Dogs, this month (July 2012). The document looks at what has been done since the first APGAW report in late 2009 and the airing of Pedigree Dogs Exposed (2008) and Pedigree Dogs Exposed: Three Years On (2012).

Welcoming the report, BVA past president Harvey Locke said: “The BVA fully endorses the recommendations and practical solutions offered by this timely report.”

Mr Locke drew attention to a number of points in the report’s action plan including:

  • APGAW’s call for long-term funding and granting of regulatory powers to the Advisory Council on the Welfare Issues of Dog Breeding
  • seeking to remove any ambiguity in the language used within The Kennel Club‘s breed standards
  • giving consideration to the meaning of “fit for function” in the breed standards
  • calling for the tightening up of dog breeding legislation in England (Northern Ireland and Wales have been taking the lead in introducing legislation)
  • dog-breeding licensing requirement should be reduced to three or more litters
  • all stakeholders should ensure that consistent key messages are delivered in education programmes
  • DEFRA codes of practice should be updated to include breeding issues relating to hereditary disease and exaggerated features

BVA past president Harvey LockeMr Locke added: “I am pleased that the APGAW report recognises the vital role that education plays in tackling irresponsible dog ownership and would very much like to see the inclusion of animal welfare as part of the core curriculum.”

He added: “Much work has already been undertaken to improve dog breeding but there is much more to be done and the momentum must not be lost.  I am most grateful to Neil Parish MP, chairman of APGAW, for his commitment to producing this report.  It is an excellent means of keeping the issue high on the agenda by encouraging wider dialogue and debate within Parliament and in the EU.”

Mr Locke also said he was “delighted” that the group recognised the value of a puppy contract and puppy information pack (PIP), recently launched by the RSPCA and BVA Animal Welfare Foundation.

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