South Shropshire MP Philip Dunne has welcomed Government plans to improve pet welfare standards and reduce the number of litters a dog breeder can produce without a licence.
Plans to tighten up laws around selling pets and breeding dogs will make it completely illegal to sell puppies younger than eight weeks, and require anyone breeding and selling three or more litters of puppies a year to apply for a formal licence. Irresponsible breeders who don’t stick to these rules face an unlimited fine and/or up to six months in prison.
The rules will also be updated and made fit for the modern age with anyone trading commercially in pets online needing to be properly licensed, to help make reputable sellers easily accessible to prospective buyers.
Mr Dunne said: “I know backstreet puppy breeding is an issue of particular concern to many dog lovers in the Ludlow Constituency. So I welcome these plans to crack down on unethical breeders and restrict the sale of puppies under eight weeks.
As more pet sales now take place online, I also welcome plans to update licensing criteria, so that the online market is subject to the same rules as pet shops and other breeders.
Consumers should have confidence that their pet has had a good start in life with the care and attention they need. So these plans from the Government represent an important step forward.”