Appeal for responsible breeders in Dumfries and Galloway

The Scottish SPCA is appealing for dog breeders in Dumfries and Galloway to join its Assured Puppy Breeder Scheme

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 17th March 2021, 4:51 pm
More than 100 puppies have been seized over the last two years after being smuggled through Cairyan port
More than 100 puppies have been seized over the last two years after being smuggled through Cairyan port

The free scheme was launched as part of its ongoing efforts to tackle the low-welfare puppy trade.

Scotland’s animal welfare charity has seen a seismic increase in public demand for puppies over lockdown. Unfortunately, this led to bad breeders taking advantage of the situation and putting profit over the welfare of the breeding dogs and puppies they were selling.

In many instances, puppies have been taken from their mothers too early or were riddled with infectious diseases caught due to lack of vaccinations or the unsanitary conditions they were raised in. Sadly, this led to many puppies passing away in their new homes or new owners having to pay for expensive veterinary treatment.

In 2020, the Scottish SPCA special investigations unit seized 51 puppies being smuggled in to the country at Cairnryan ferry port. This is compared to 60 puppies seized at the port in 2019.

Scottish SPCA head of education, policy and research, Gilly Mendes Ferreira said: “Now, more than ever, we need to provide assurance for the public that they are buying a puppy from responsible breeders. The general public can view members of the scheme through our ‘Say no to Puppy Dealers’ website and look in to buying a puppy safely from them.

“We currently have two breeders in Lockerbie but we are looking for more reputable breeders in the area to help us tackle the low-welfare puppy trade.”

The voluntary scheme is available to any dog breeder in Scotland. The Scottish SPCA has developed a framework for responsible breeding and inspectors will assess applications and visit breeding premises annually to make sure high welfare standards are in place.

The scheme is free and the Society does not profit from the sale of any puppies but does receive a small commission from Petplan Ltd for any litters registered.

Gilly continues: “Our mantra is ‘adopt don’t shop’ and we will always advocate rescuing rather than buying.

But, as long as puppies are suffering due to this industry, we will do what we can to bring down this despicable trade. ”