We’re absolutely delighted to report that the Government has finally taken some action to help put a stop to the notoriously cruel ‘puppy farms’ where profit comes before compassion and animal welfare standards are lamentably low.
Lucy’s Law, named after a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, who tragically died in 2016 after being poorly treated on a puppy farm, was passed by Parliament in in May this year and will come into force in April 2020.
The ruling bans the sale of puppies and kittens from third parties, forcing consumers to get their puppy or kitten directly from a breeder or a rehoming centre like ours.
It is hoped that the new rule will stop kittens and puppies from being separated from their mothers too early (which can be very traumatising) and from young animals being smuggled illegally into the UK for sale.
No animal should be exploited for a quick buck, but sadly it’s an industry which has burgeoned over recent years as the general public has simply not been aware of the cruelty and neglect which goes on behind the scenes.
Behind the scenes, dogs are often kept in such squalid conditions that disease is rife. Their bodies might be constantly fighting distemper or the Parvo virus while they are highly stressed at the farm, but then only start to really show symptoms when they start to relax with their new and unsuspecting family – just like we sometimes get ill on holiday when we start to unwind.
The big question, of course, is how will the new ruling be policed? The authorities need the right funding to be able to turn the vision into reality, with online sales posing a particular challenge.
The move may also result in large numbers of dogs being abandoned and cast out by those breeders who do not wish to deliver high welfare standards but we will be there to pick up the pieces and offer a safe, warm and compassionate place to stay until rehoming.
This is undoubtedly fantastic news for animal welfare but with thousands of dogs and cats sitting waiting for their forever homes in animal rescues up and down the country, we still need to get the #adoptdontshop message out there.