The Kennel Club (KC) is calling on the veterinary profession to help clamp down on the puppy farming trade by making clients aware about the importance of buying a puppy from a responsible breeder.
Recent KC research shows as many as one in three people could potentially be buying from puppy farms, after sourcing their pup online, on social media, in pet shops or through free newspaper ads, all outlets used by puppy farmers.
It also showed as many as one in three fail to see the puppy with its mother, more than half don’t see its breeding environment, 70% receive no puppy contract and 69% did not see any relevant health certificates for the puppy’s parents, which indicate the likely health of the pup.
Vets and nurses are being asked to support the week by requesting a free PAW pack from the KC. The pack contains posters and flyers with information and advice, a PAW window sticker for the surgery and PAW bookmarks to give to their client. Packs can be requested in advance but will be available from mid July.
KC secretary Caroline Kisko said: “We need to raise awareness among puppy buyers about the importance of not buying from rogue dealers, who are making money at the expense of their dogs’ welfare.
“The veterinary profession has a captive audience of animal lovers who can then go on to be great champions of the cause, spreading the message about buying a puppy responsibly.
“If we could spread one simple message people can easily remember it is ‘ABS (Assured Breeder Scheme) is Best’, as the KC has already done various checks on members of this scheme giving puppy buyers confidence in their credentials.
“People need to understand it is not acceptable to buy a puppy without seeing the mum, without seeing the breeding environment, without a contract of sale or without health test certificates, and to know how to spot the signs of a puppy farmer early on, as once people get to the breeder’s house it’s often too late, as they want to rescue the pup.”
The KC Assured Breeder Scheme was established in 2004 and last year the club received United Kingdom Accreditation Services (UKAS) accreditation to certify breeders on the scheme. This means the KC is recognised by the Government’s sole recognised accreditation authority as a robust and impartial assessor of the breeders on the scheme.
KC assured breeders have to abide by the scheme standard, which includes ensuring puppies are shown with their mother, the parents are given the appropriate health tests for their breed before they are bred from, they have a clean and safe breeding environment and are given the correct vaccinations.
To get involved in Puppy Awareness Week and receive a PAW pack, contact the KC press office at email@example.com