Dogs Trust

Huge step forward for animal welfare as Scottish Government announces plans to revise legislation on breeding of dogs

In Scotland, the laws governing the breeding of dogs predate the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act and are in urgent need of review.

We have been calling for the legislation to be updated and strengthened to reflect the latest understanding of animal health and welfare for many years. We are therefore delighted the Scottish Government will be aligning with England, Wales and Northern Ireland by revising the legislation for the breeding of dogs and urge them to introduce important changes that will ensure the animals involved are protected.

Today’s review is yet another step forward for dog welfare in Scotland and continues the Scottish Government’s commitment to animal welfare, following the announcement earlier this week that it would move to regulate the rehoming sector as well as bring forward plans to set up an Animal Welfare Commission.

One particularly welcome inclusion in the review is the focus on how best to protect offspring from inherited defects, including disease and conformational problems. This includes brachycephalic issues, the result of a shortened skull that impacts certain breeds of dogs. With the explosion in demand for breeds such as Pugs, French and English Bulldogs we are seeing more dogs with physical characteristics, such as narrower nostrils, which impact their ability to breathe and subsequently their quality of life.

This consultation outlines a plan to future proof their welfare. We hope it will make our wish for healthier dogs a reality.

Read more about our work with the Government