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Electronic Training Aids: Animal Welfare

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 11th March 2020.

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Photo of Bridget Phillipson Bridget Phillipson Labour, Houghton and Sunderland South

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he has made an assessment of the effect of (a) shock collars and (b) other aversive training devices on animals' long-term health and wellbeing; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Victoria Prentis Victoria Prentis The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

The Government remains committed to banning the use of remote controlled hand-held electronic training collars (e-collars) for dogs and cats in England. This is based on Defra funded research carried out between 2007 and 2010 which showed that e-collars compromise the welfare of some dogs. Anyone causing unnecessary suffering to a dog through the misuse or otherwise of a training device would be in breach of the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and subject to a maximum penalty of six months imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine. The Government is committed to increasing the maximum custodial penalty for this offence to five years.

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