Monday, 2 August 2010

What do you think?

I've just watched Panorama and I found it all too brief and that it left us up in the air. It showed us the problems but none of the answers.
We need the Puppy Contract - now.
That idiot who bred a litter of Staffies from a rescue dog just epitomises everything wrong with the way people breed dogs.
£300 a bitch, £250 a dog. If someone can afford the purchase price they're good enough to have his pups. Not planned, but a friend's dog invited around when his female dog was in season.
Make breeders pay for putting these dogs to sleep a few years down the line. Get a chunk of that money back for the people who clear up the mess.
Let's make breeding have a consequence!
Have all dogs sold with a Universal Puppy Contract by law.
Make the breeder liable for any dogs they breed ending up in rescue.
Fine them for not finding good homes.
Click here to watch the programme again.


jo siemieniowski said...

I totally agree with you, it was a really depressing show to watch, and made me feel really angry that these indiscriminate breeding is still allowed ! I still feel the same about ban the deed not the breed.those poor staffies, it is all because of the way they were treated and brought up by these idiotic young men using them as status symbols!

cambstreasurer said...

I think it might be hard to define "mess" in law unless you were prepared to be pretty draconian about who was allowed to buy a puppy.

I'm thinking of a young couple who twice (TWICE!) needed our help because his staffie puppy had an intestinal obstruction after her baby had dropped his dummy and puppy had swallowed it!!!

Young couple, baby and dog were all perfectly nice, just incredibly dim.
If it had happened a third time I'd have insisted they signed the puppy over for rehoming or paid for everything themselves, but I can't see a court holding a breeder responsible for any of it.

That's an extreme case, but similar families turn up all the time with accidents where puppies have been dropped, eaten things they shouldn't etc. etc.

I can see the puppy contract being very useful indeed as a sanction against irresponsible breeding by making breeders responsible for bills to treat inherited problems, but I doubt whether you could force breeders to do the kind of home-checking you see in rescue.

I suppose you could simply include a clause forcing the breeder to take dogs back, but that might not help if the breeder opted to have them killed instead.

Beverley Cuddy said...

I just think if you manufacture pups badly you should put a proportion of your 'profit' aside to clean up the mess. Be that vet fees for expensive operations or the kennels bill for finding your dog a good home or putting it to sleep.
There should be a consequence to breeding dogs badly. And good breeders should be campaigning hard for a clearer line between people breeding for money and love.

Tony Cruse said...

I think you have to look at the breeders. Similar to what Beverley said.
Breeders should perhaps set some money aside for a percentage for 'bounce back dogs'. E.g, the dogs that have gone wrong or the handler can't have them anymore.
Breeders have to take responsibility for
a) the linage..breed good temperament dogs
b) early training, habituation and socialisation
c) the puppies new homes and owners must be checked and the potential owners must be as responsible and educated regarding puppies as they possibly can be!
If any of those things fail, the breeder must be responsible for the dog they helped create.
No faults with Battersea Dogs Home who are doing their best picking up the damage.

Anonymous said...

For ALL Breeders
- A licence to breed costing as much as £100, or maybe more per litter (so you have to apply for each litter you plan to breed and the licence is non refundable regardless of whether your bitch does not go on to produce any pups)
- You then get a unique number which can be checked on a central database
- You cannot advertise puppies for sale ANYWHERE online or offline without this number, which can be easilly verified even by the public either online at a publically available database or via a call centre. Failure to obtain a licence results first in a HUGE fine of £1000, and resultant offences, imprisonment. The public are encouraged to grass up those that don't obtain this with some sort of small financial reward. They can do this anonymously.
- In addition you MUST have a Puppy Contract and all pups must be ID'ed either microchipped or tatooed
- All puppy owners will automatically receive a free neutering voucher corresponding to their dogs ID number which they can then claim at their local PDSA or vets
- The cost of the neutering etc is paid for by the Breeders Licence and any resultant fines from non compliance
- any owners buying a puppy without the required paperwork (as mentioned above) and from an unlicenced Breeder is liable for a huge fine

- all Stud Dog owners will also require a licence to stud their dog, and again will not be able to advertise their dog anywhere without it etc. The licence could be an annual fee of say £500 (which again would help to pay the free neutering). Again the public can easilly check on a dog themselves and grass up any non licenced stud dogs anonymously and receive a small financial reward.

Other thoughts
- vets should be encouraged to offer discounts to clients whose pets are neutered for the lifetime of that pet, say 10 to 20% off
- set a max price you can charge for puppies
- fine the breeder (£100 or more) for any puppies that they produced that end up in Pounds and Rescues (puppies will be traceable thanks to microchip or tattoo)

Anonymous said...

More thoughts:

The possible advantage of this system is that the public is actively encouraged to grass up people who don't have a licence. So imagine, a bloke across from you has just had a litter of pups and you have checked him out on the public database (or phone centre) and know he hasn't applied for a licence. You can then inform the authorities, the man or 'breeder' in question will be fined and if they fail to pay, they will be taken to court and the dog and puppies will be seized and rehomed. Meanwhile you get, say £40, for the tipoff and your details are never publically disclosed to anyone. Easy money!

Another addition to the idea I posted above is discounting the fees for KC reg breeders who can provide all the correct documentation showing that they have carried out all the health checks on the bitch or stud dog as recommended by the KC and BVA by way of encouraging responsible breeding and healthy stock.

Any accidental matings, you can apply for a licence retrospectively within a certain time frame, so before the pups are born, but it will cost you more. A mismate jab at the vets will be heavilly subsidised or free for those on benefits, and less expensive than applying for a retrospective breeding licence for those not on benefits.

Pai said...

"You can then inform the authorities, the man or 'breeder' in question will be fined and if they fail to pay, they will be taken to court and the dog and puppies will be seized and rehomed."

I'd hope such a thing wasn't implemented until the vast majority of dogs already in shelters were being rehomed easily. Otherwise you're just overstressing the system and most likely going to end up killing even more dogs for lack of homes.

Anonymous said...

I think it's a great idea but agree with Pai in that the shelters at the moment need help in emptying their kennels.
I shall be requesting a copy of the puppy contract also because on of the main issues I see is checking who is having litters and who isn't - is this tied up with some restriction in advertising laws to stop selling your dog alongside your old tv. The ad mag had too large adverts just last week which were clearly for farms of some sort, one of them had five different breeds available and the other eleven - and no address just email and phone number. Who will check on all of these people and deal with the backlash, local councils are already struggling to fulfil statutory obligation.