Dogs: Animal Breeding

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered at on 15 June 2023.

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Photo of Justin Madders Justin Madders Shadow Minister (Future of Work), Shadow Minister (Business and Industrial Strategy)

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps she plans to take to regulate canine fertility clinics.

Photo of Trudy Harrison Trudy Harrison The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Under the Veterinary Surgeons Act 1966, only veterinary surgeons are permitted to perform canine artificial insemination. Any non-vet undertaking canine artificial insemination is therefore in breach of the Act. Those operating canine fertility clinics, and owners using their services, are required under The Animal Welfare Act 2006 to protect the animals involved from harm and to provide for their welfare in line with good practice. A breach of these provisions may lead to imprisonment, a fine, or both.

In addition, under the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 (the 2018 Regulations), anyone in the business of breeding and selling dogs and/or who breeds three or more litters in a twelve-month period needs to hold a valid licence issued by their local authority. Licensees must meet strict statutory minimum welfare standards which are enforced by local authorities who have powers to issue, refuse or revoke licences. We are in the process of reviewing these regulations and will report in Autumn.

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