LOCAL MEP QUESTIONS RULES FOR IMPORTING PETS
West Midlands MEP Daniel Dalton is questioning the rules regarding the importation of puppies into the UK.
It follows West Midlands based charity the Dogs Trust’s investigation into vets and breeders in Lithuania and Romania, and the worrying ease in which commercial transporters can bring puppies into Great Britain under a scheme designed for pet owners. The Trust says thousands of these puppies brought in this way do not fulfil current UK health rules.
Mr Dalton said, “Pet passport rules were designed to allow owners to go on holiday with their dog or maybe move home. They were never designed to be used by commercial operators. The ease with which dealers are importing sickly, or undocumented puppies into Great Britain –bringing with them a risk of disease – is alarming.”
The Dog´s Trust recently experimented by importing a stuffed toy into Britain and in three out of four occasions no authority checked its validity.
The Dogs Trust European Policy Advisor, Claire Calder said, “The Dogs Trust presented the European Commission, as well as national governments across the EU, with evidence of the illegal puppy trade last year and we are disappointed to find that the situation across the EU does not appear to have improved. The implications of the puppy smuggling trade are huge; for consumers who are being duped and the puppies that suffer horribly.’
“There is clear abuse of the system and the rules need to be reviewed. The school holidays start this week and border staff need to be extra vigilant,” concluded Daniel. “I will be meeting the Dog´s Trust in September to discuss how we can tighten existing laws and enforcement procedures.”