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Dog Breeding and Sourcing

Project Lead: Dr Kirsten McMillan

Project objectives: 

  • Every day, dogs are bred, sold and traded across the country. This trade includes regulated, unregulated, illegal and irresponsible breeding and sales. Very little is known regarding the scale of the market or the source of these dogs. A survey of pet ownership indicates that there is around 9 million pet dogs in the UK. Assuming an average life expectancy of 12 years, at least 750,000 puppies are needed each year to maintain the current population size.  
    • 40% come from Kennel Club registrations and rehoming centres 
    • Where are the remaining 60% coming from (i.e. ~450,000 puppies)?  
  • We aimed to shed light on this subject by:  
    1. Quantifying and comparing the supply of puppies from two sources:  
      1. Puppies bred under local authority dog breeding licences, versus 
      2. Puppies advertised for sale online (Gumtree, Preloved and UK Classifieds). 
    2. Highlighting regions of Great Britain with discrepancies in these, indicating areas of mass supply versus apparent demand.