Dogs Trust

Dogs Trust Calls for Tougher Punishment for Puppy Farmers

We have launched our emotive ‘Puppy Farms are a Life Sentence’ campaign to highlight the often-lenient penalties imposed on those responsible for the horrific misery endured on puppy farms. We are appealing to the public to support our petition calling for tougher punishment for puppy farmers.

As part of the campaign we have launched a thought-provoking new video demonstrating that puppy farming is a life sentence, especially for the mum left behind. By buying that ‘cute’ puppy advertised online, you may be unwittingly fuelling the trade that sentences the parent dogs to a life of misery.

We spent €61,085 on veterinary fees alone, treating 161 victims of puppy farming, the majority of whom came from two sources, who were each fined less than €2,000 each.

Speaking about the campaign, Head of Communications, Dogs Trust Ireland, Ciara Murran says: “We are particularly shocked at the small fines imposed on puppy farmers, compared to what it costs the charity. The numbers just don’t add up, especially when you consider what these unscrupulous individuals are charging unsuspecting members of the public for the puppies they are selling.We are urging people to support our campaign to show the public appetite for harsher punishment for puppy farmers, as the penalties being imposed at present are not a deterrent.”

Two of the victims we cared for are Mollie, a six-year-old Poodle and Rudi, a four-year-old Cavalier King Charles. Both dogs arrived into our care suffering from appalling matting of their fur, severely overgrown nails, dental disease and ear infections. They were described by the Veterinary and Behaviour teams as ‘absolutely terrified’ and tried to hide and avoid human contact whenever possible. Despite being adopted to a loving home, it took four months until their adopters could touch them.

Pam King, Adopter of Mollie & Rudi explains: “We are so proud of these two fabulous dogs for the courage they have shown in adapting to our home after the horrors they’ve experienced. I have had dogs all my life, including 14 rescue dogs from a wide variety of backgrounds but I have never witnessed the fear that they demonstrated when we first adopted them.”

Veterinary and Welfare Manager, Dogs Trust Ireland, Niamh Curran-Kelly continues: “It’s beyond upsetting and demoralising to see people who have inflicted a lifetime of misery on dogs, receive a slap on the wrist when prosecuted. It’s not only the parent dogs who suffer, often their puppies have a lifetime of behavioural issues and in many cases veterinary conditions arising from the cruelty involved in the bad breeding on puppy farms.

Puppy farming is a life sentence; even if you are lucky enough to get a puppy free from behavioural and health issues, please think of the mum left behind and what she must endure on a daily basis.”

We are urging the public to sign our petition via calling for tougher punishment for puppy farmers.

Find us on Facebook, and Instagram or follow the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #LifeSentence