2019 saw some legal advances for dogs with the addition of mandatory licensing for breeders and boarders but no additional resources were made available to publicise and police it so it remains largely ineffective. Much still remains to be done, not least legislation that was not drafted but not passed. The ban on third party puppy and kitten sales (aka Lucy’s Law) is due to come into force in April, but, although welcome, will have limited effects on the puppy trade.
So here is my wish list for dogs for 2020:
- Additions to the AWA 2006 to criminalise aversive training techniques including the use of shock and citronella collars
- Mandatory licensing of behaviourists, trainers, groomers and walkers, including requirements for qualifications and insurance
- Mandatory domestic passports for dogs to include origin, microchip details and health records with a compulsory section for declaration of intention to breed, including health checks and countersigned by a vet
- Limitations on the breeding of brachycephalic and achondroplastic dogs, with all such breeders requiring mandatory additional oversight
- Removal of severely affected breeds from the UKKC CC qualifications until major health improvements are endemic
- Sufficient injection resources to police existing and future legislation and for education of canine professionals and the general public
- Mandatory employment of sufficient dog wardens in every local authority
- Mandatory restriction of firework use to licensed professionals only with an obligation to use quiet fireworks and a period of public notification in advance of displays where permission is granted
- Much more implementation of existing law with owners being prosecuted for dogs off lead on roads, obesity and neglect including long periods with dogs left alone on a regular basis.
Happy New Year and here’s hoping.