INDEPENDENT SUPPLEMENT BY MEDIAPLANET DISTRIBUTED WITHIN THE INDEPENDENT
31 July 2014
Brian May pictured with Peter Egan and Marc The Vet on front cover…
Marc the vet pictured with Peter Egan and Brian May, talks about the devastating impact of illegal puppy farms and what can be done to fight this animal welfare catastrophe
Left: Sarah Harding pictured with her dog at Marc’s dog show last year
Above: Tricks at the dog show;
Right: Puppies being sold illegally
Below: Marc (right) is pictured with Queen guitarist Brian May (centre) and actor Peter Egan (left)
who work together to campaign against puppy farms. PHOTOS: PUPAlD
Working together to prevent animal cruelty
Puppy fanning: What is it? Why does it exist?
And how can we all play an important part in fighting this hidden animal welfare catastrophe right here in the UK?
Within our nation of animal lovers exists an almost invisible, sinister industry, fuelled by greedy puppy farming; mass production of puppies sold for profit at the expense of animal welfare. Two hundred breeding bitches per shed can be mated their whole miserable lives until infertility renders them ‘useless’ so they’re destroyed. Conditions in licenced puppy farms are horrific with insufficient food, water, bedding, toys, ventilation, and staff; poorly pups born into maternity wards of filth, contamination, and neglect.
These evil places churn out hundreds of thousands of pups; taken away from their mums too early, unvaccinated and painfully inbred, then transported hundreds of miles to pet shops, garden centres, pretend breeders and even ‘puppy supermarkets’.
Puppies are big business: £300 to £3,000 buys you a cute, fluffy, ticking time bomb, ready to explode with disease and serious behavioural problems within a few hours of arriving in its new home.
Convenience culture phis celebrity-endorsed fashion-dogs fuels impulse-buying of French bulldogs, pugs, and ‘designer’ crossbreeds. And at the same time, rescue shelters overflow; healthy unwanted pets wait weeks, months, years. So how can we change it?
Local authorities issue breeding licences without adequate inspections or enforcement of the Anirnal Welfare Act which was created to prevent cruelty. Many puppy farms remain unlicensed so good luck to anyone tackling this level. Pet shops legally buy and sell puppies – an outdated legislation that conveniently omits puppies’ emotional needs. Our government sadly ignores its own advice to ‘Always see a puppy with its mother:’
Awareness helps the public choose responsibly i.e. rescue dog or ethically bred pup. Changing consumer behaviour starves the supply chain, forcing puppy farms out of business. New laws banning puppies from pet shops would help end this cruel industry, significantly reducing outlets for puppy farmers selling their produce.
PupAid.org is my awareness raizing campaign to be debated in House of Commons on 4 September. Ask your MP to attend then, fingers crossed, we can celebrate a major step in ending puppy farming at our fun dog show two days later!
MARC ABRAHAM BVM&S MRCVS
Winner ‘Vet of the Year’ CEVA Animal Welfare Awards 2014 and campaigner
To read extended article visit petcareadvice.co.uk