The Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, Mr. Phil Hogan, has today (21/12/2011) signed the commencement order for the Dog Breeding Establishments Act 2010.
In our blog post on the 26th October we drew attention again to the issue of puppy farming in some dog breeders establishments in Ireland. Following a special program broadcast by TV3 titled ‘Animal A&E’ on the previous night, momentum was quickly gathering in Ireland around this issue. Through Facebook, Twitter and Blogs, many organisations, including of course our own, were appealing for signatures on a petition that would bring this issue to the Governments attention. The hope here was to get an Act passed that would stricten the laws in relation to dog breeding. The benefits of this would be direct prevention of puppy farming taking place, as well as making the reprucussions for those breaking these laws more harsh.
Well, it has paid off! We are delighted to report that the petition must have made a loud noise as Mr. Hogan, the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, has signed the commencement order for the Dog Breeding Establishments Act! He also commented on the strength of the proposed Act and stated that these regulations would control the operation of dog breeding establishments across the country and thus help oust cruelty and poor health in animals bred in these environments.
“Owners and operators of all dog breeding establishments should strive to achieve the highest possible standards. Breeders acknowledge that the welfare and performance of their dogs go hand in hand. The Guidelines published alongside the legislation will enable people to see the standards that are required” stated Minister Hogan.
“The majority of dog breeding establishments in the country are well run and the owners and operators maintain high standards. However, I am well aware of problems with a small number of establishments. This legislation will deal with these operators, who seem to have no respect for the animals that they use for breeding purposes” said Minister Hogan.
He went on to say that owners and operators of good quality establishments where dogs are well treated have absolutely nothing to fear from these regulations. The Minister said that establishments will have a lead in time of six months to apply to their Local Authority to be included in the register of dog breeding establishments. As with other dog control issues, Local Authorities will be responsible for the implementation of the legislation locally.
The Minister also announced the introduction of a new Lifetime of Dog Licence from 1 January 2012. This once off purchase will cover the entire lifetime of a dog. The cost of the Lifetime of Dog Licence is €140 and these special licences can be purchased from Local Authorities, rather than at Post Offices.
The cost of the annual Dog Licence will increase from the current €12.70 to €20. This it the first increase in the annual Dog Licence since 1998. Minister Hogan said that the increase was in line with the increase in the Consumer Price index and was appropriate given the costs of maintaining the dog control services, but added that the fee of €20 was a very modest annual charge.
The cost of a General Dog Licence for owners of multiple dogs will be €400. As with the Lifetime Dog Licences, the General Dog Licence can be purchased from the Local Authorities rather than at Post Offices.
The Act will come into force on 1 January 2012.
When Buy and Sell became aware of Puppy Farming issues we set the goal of helping to promote the cause of Rescue dogs and centres in Ireland. Since then, we have over 250 rescue dogs on our website, and work with Rescue Centres throughout the country to help in anyway we can. We are also proud to sponsor the Adopt a Pet area at the Pet Expo in the RDS. All of our non Rescue Dog ads are strictly monitored and we ask that any signs of poor treatment of animals or hints of puppy farming be reported to the ISPCA and reported to us so we can remove the ads.
We are delighted that this Act has been signed. It is a good day for Dogs in Ireland.