Stricter regulations will come into force in April next year
Changes to dog breeding laws will come into force in Wales next year, in a bid to tackle irresponsible breeding.
Under new regulations passed by the Welsh Government this week, licensed breeders will be required to show how they will give their dogs environmental enrichment and how they will socialise their puppies.
From April 30, 2015, license holders must ensure breeding bitches do not give birth to more than one litter in a 12 month period, and do not produce more than six litters in their lifetime.
In addition, anyone keeping three or more breeding bitches at their premises, and/or anyone who breeds three or more litters within any 12 month period, must hold a breeding license.
The Kennel Club welcomed the new regulations but raised concerns that local authorities may not have the resources to inspect premises, meaning “hobby” breeders will be targeted, rather than large scale puppy farmers.
“We do not want to see things being made difficult for responsible hobby breeders simply because they are ‘visible’, whilst large scale puppy farmers who hide their activities continue to flout the law and avoid restrictions,” said Caroline Kisko, the Kennel Club’s secretary.
The organisation has offered to train local authority inspectors and called for assessors from its assured breeder scheme to be employed by local authorities.
The Animal Welfare (Breeding of Dogs) (Wales) Regulations 2014 can be viewed here:www.assembly.wales