MP joins Evesham charity as anti-puppy smuggling campaign reaches top dogs in Westminster - The Evesham Observer

MP joins Evesham charity as anti-puppy smuggling campaign reaches top dogs in Westminster

Evesham Editorial 17th Mar, 2019   0

REPRESENTATIVES of the Dogs Trust, MP Nigel Huddleston and ten other cross-party members of Parliament delivered a book of MPs’ pledges to 10 Downing Street to put an end to puppy smuggling.

As part of the campaign, 11,000 people across the country had urged their MPs to clampdown on the cruel practice.

The Mid Worcestershire MP is one of 137 MPs to have pledged their support to Dogs Trust’s drive to end the illegal importation of dogs into Great Britain under the Pet Travel Scheme.

He has been heavily involved with the campaign for some time, having led a debate on puppy smuggling in Parliament in 2017.

The Dogs Trust has been investigating the issue since 2014 with its reports revealing shocking evidence of the Pet Travel Scheme being exploited by illegal puppy importers.

Research has found the street value of dogs intercepted at the border is estimated to be over £1million over the last four years – £500,000 on French Bulldogs alone.

The charity’s fourth report in October 2018 revealed further evidence of corrupt vets in Central and Eastern Europe falsifying documents for underage puppies to be brought into Great Britain, as well as pregnant dogs being smuggled so their puppies can be born in the UK and quickly sold on to unsuspecting buyers.

Dogs Trust Veterinary Director Paula Boyden said: “The complete disregard for the health and welfare of dogs being illegally imported is appalling.

“We need to see a number of changes, including visual checks on all dogs entering the UK, out of hours and weekend cover at ports by Government agencies and increased maximum penalties for those caught alongside punitive Fixed Penalty Notices.”

Mr Huddleston added: “I have long supported Dogs Trust in their efforts to raise awareness of the issue and tackle the abhorrent smuggling of puppies from Central and Eastern Europe to the UK.

“I was delighted to join the charity at 10 Downing Street to deliver the book of MP pledges.

“Our support and the overwhelming backing from the public will hopefully encourage Government to bring an end to puppy smuggling with the introduction of tighter controls and the need for much stronger penalties to deter this horrific crime.”

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