MEP hears tragic tales of illegally imported pups
East Midlands MEP, Emma McClarkin, has had a behind the scenes tour of Dogs Trust Loughborough to find out about the plight of illegally imported puppies.
Dogs Trust is the founding member of the EU Dog & Cat Alliance which now has more than 65 member organisations from across Europe that have joined together to, among other issues, tackle the illegal trade in dogs and cats.
This year, Dogs Trust has rehomed 300 puppies who had been illegally imported into the UK, caring for them and paying for their quarantine costs until it was time for them to find their forever homes.
Dogs Trust Loughborough rehomes hundreds of dogs every year and following the tour where she met some of the illegally imported pups, Emma said:
"It is absolutely heartbreaking to hear what so many of these puppies have been through but also wonderful to see the incredible love and care they are given here at Dogs Trust Loughborough.
"As a dog lover it is very hard to understand how anyone can take part in the illegal trade of puppies and see dogs simply as commodities to make money."
Following Emma's visit, Dogs Trust Loughborough's Rehoming Centre Manager, Celine Di Crocco, said:
"At this time of year there is a huge spike in people wanting to buy puppies as Christmas presents and sadly may people now look for puppies online, which is largely how illegally imported puppies are sold.
"These puppies don't have appropriate vaccinations, are transported in horrendous conditions, have false documents and have been taken away from their mums far too soon. Sadly around 8% of the illegally imported puppies we have seized have died before we were able to rehome them which is an absolute tragedy.
"We would urge everyone to never buy a puppy online as to do so may sadly be supporting the illegal puppy trade. Always consider adopting a dog has found themselves without a home and give them a second chance to have the happy, healthy life all dogs deserve."
Click here to see how Dogs Trust is tackling the puppy smuggling trade this Christmas, or here to read the full investigation into puppy smuggling.