Dogs Trust

Dogs Trust Delivers Over 52,000 Signatures to Oireachtas Committee Asking to Stop the Illegal Sale of Dogs

Last November, we launched an emotive campaign entitled “Sold A Pup” to highlight the cruelty and deception currently surrounding the illegal selling and advertising of dogs and puppies. As part of this campaign, we asked the public to take action by signing a petition asking the Irish government to enforce the existing laws, to stop the illegal sale of dogs.

We presented this petition containing over 52,307 signatures to Senator Lynn Boylan as a member of The Joint Committee on Agriculture and the Marine. The Committee meets today at 3:30pm to discuss The Sale Supply & Advertising of Pets regulations and has invited our Executive Director, Becky Bristow to speak at the hearing.

Laws were introduced in February 2020 around the Sale, Supply and Advertising of Pets yet many sellers continue to deliberately flout them. The rules make it a legal requirement for puppies to be eight weeks of age or older before being sold. The unique microchip number for each dog must be displayed on the ad, as well as the Dog Breeding Establishment registration number, if applicable and a seller/supplier number for anybody selling more than five pets in a calendar year and the country of the dog’s origin but sadly, many online ads are not compliant.

Speaking about the petition, Senator Lynn Boylan said: “At present, the illegal online sale of dogs is a highly sophisticated operation with unscrupulous sellers using multiple profiles, phone numbers and in some cases multiple jurisdictions to advertise and sell dogs with no culpability. The online selling platforms themselves have no way of verifying that the adverts are legitimate or even if the dogs or puppies being advertised are those actually for sale. This leaves the onus on the purchaser and organisations like Dogs Trust who are trying to warn the public of the dangers of buying a dog online and a lot more needs to be done to enforce the rules for advertising dogs online.”

Speaking at the delivery of the petition, Executive Director, Dogs Trust, Bristow said: “The rigorous enforcement of the Sale, Supply and Advertising of Pets law is imperative because it gives low welfare breeders nowhere to hide. Introducing a system which verifies the authenticity of sellers and the dogs they are selling prior to display of the advert means that every dog sold would be traceable back to the seller.”