Ban on Puppy Farming
After years of campaigning, ‘Lucy’s Law,’ ( a ban on puppy and kitten farming), is expected to come into force, in 2020.
The law relates to England but it is expected to be implemented Nationwide.
This will mean that anyone wishing to buy a puppy will have to go directly through a breeder.
The aim of the regulation is to stop puppy farming and ensure that puppies are born in a safe environment. The pups should be kept with their mother until they are old enough to be homed and sold from their place of birth.
At present, pedigree bitches are kept in filthy conditions with the sole purpose of delivering one litter of puppies after another. The puppies are taken from their mothers far too early, leaving them susceptible to disease and behavioural problems.
The law is aimed to stop pet shops and third-party breeders from selling puppies.
What is a Puppy Farm?
A Puppy Farm is a place where dogs are bred solely for profit. They are kept in unbearable conditions in cramped, dirty cages. The bitches are expected to deliver several litters in quick succession and the puppies are removed at the age of four to five weeks old.
Many puppies die at birth or soon after. The ones who survive are traumatised, malnourished and suffering from infections and diseases.
The puppies are passed on to pet shops or ‘dealers’ who sell the dogs online or in newspapers. The dealers masquerade as genuine breeders, so the buyer is not aware of the puppies background.
Marc Abraham, the founder of Pup Aid, which campaigned for the law change, said:
“Lucy’s law’ is named after one of the sweetest, bravest dogs I’ve ever known, and is a fitting tribute to all the victims of the cruel third-party puppy trade, both past, and present.”
Mark Abraham is a vet who appears as a pet advisor on popular tv programmes. He started campaigning for a ban of puppy farming over a decade ago. His campaign was initially called Pup Aid but it was changed to Lucy’s Law after Mark met Lucy and her owner, Lisa Garner at a Pup Aid fundraising event. Mark discovered that Lucy had become a social media star with thousands of followers worldwide. When Lucy passed away there was an enormous outpouring of grief from every corner of the world. Together they arranged to campaign in Lucy’s memory, they launched Lucy’s Law a year after she died.
The RSPCA supports the ban, this is a quote from RSPCA chief executive Chris Sherwood.
“We hope this ban, alongside the tougher licensing regulations that were introduced in October, will help to stamp out the underground trade that exploits these wonderful animals simply to make a quick buck.”
The Little Dog Behind Lucy’s Law
Lucy was rescued from a Welsh puppy farm. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel’s hips had fused together, she had a curved spine, bald patches, and epilepsy after years of mistreatment. She’d been kept in a cage much of her life and was no longer able to have puppies.
Lucy was rehomed by Lisa Garner and enjoyed three years of love before she died in 2016. Lisa started campaigning for Lucy’s Law a year after Lucy died, she achieved incredible support from vets, animal charities and celebrities including Liam Gallagher and Ricky Gervais.
Will Lucy’s Law Work?
Puppy farmers rely on advertising and social media to sell puppies. There is no option for them to ‘go underground’, they need to be seen to sell, and by doing that, they risk prosecution.
If You Are Thinking Of Buying A Puppy
You can read my blog post called Healthy Puppy Checklist and Warning Signs of Illness, it features bullet points of signs to look out for when you are choosing a puppy including physical symptoms and body language.
If you are thinking of buying a puppy, from an ethical breeder this website is designed to help.
It is packed with all the information you need before purchasing a puppy and has the support of the RSPCA, PDSA, Dogs Trust, Animal Welfare and many other pet welfare organisations.
The good news is it is completely free to view online or download.
I particularly love this article called How To Spot A Puppy Dealer.
This is courtesy of Dog Breeding Stakeholder Group which was formed in 2008.
However, please consider the hundreds of dogs in shelters who are looking for their forever homes. All good rescues neuter, immunise, complete vet checks and give insightful reviews of dog’s behaviour from foster placements. The rescue wants to find the dog a home for life and they will work with you to find the best possible match.
A Small Request
I would like to add some images and real-life stories to this post. If you have a dog from a puppy farm please share their story and continue little Lucy’s work. I can be contacted at email@example.com. I’m happy to add suitable links in exchange for a photograph and short bio.