The Kennel Club has released a statement to clarify its position relating to the Animal Welfare Bill and the implications that the proposed ban on tail docking would have on shows.
Received by OUR DOGS last Tuesday it read:- ‘The recent vote in the House of Commons regarding tail docking, has resulted in a situation which will, hopefully, protect the right of owners of certain types of working dogs to continue to dock pups which are likely to be worked. It will not allow for the owners of all working breeds to continue to dock unless they can prove that their pups are to be used for their traditional job of work. Defra has failed to make clear how they intend to tackle the matter of natural bobs in a number of breeds, despite Kennel Club enquiries on the subject.
‘As it currently stands, the Bill is also due to include a ban on showing dogs that are docked, even if legally docked. This will apply only to dogs docked after the date of the law’s introduction onwards. This rule will only apply to shows where the viewing public have been charged an entry fee. Any dog that has been docked prior to the date of the Bill’s introduction will continue to be allowed to be shown at all shows for the lifetime of the dog. It appears that this rule will apply to all dogs from the UK and overseas.
‘The Kennel Club does not see the logic of the proposed ban on showing of docked dogs, as it sees no reason why responsible and genuine working dog owners should be penalised for legally carrying out an action that the Government accepts is in the interest of the dog’s welfare. The Kennel Club is lobbying parliamentarians to remove this ban from the Bill and has stated that it is willing and able to take responsibility for monitoring docked dogs at Kennel Club licensed shows to ensure that they have been docked legally, and would, if it were left to deal with the matter under the law, disqualify from wins at such shows any dogs which had been docked illegally.
‘Further to the information on docking, dew claw removal is not currently suggested as a matter for inclusion in the Animal Welfare Bill but the Kennel Club will continue to watch this issue very closely at the regulations stage.’