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Irresponsible dog breeding

Question écrite de M. Angelo CIOCCA - Commission européenne

Question de M. Angelo CIOCCA,

Diffusée le 27 février 2024

Subject: Irresponsible dog breeding

Irresponsible dog breeding is a complex problem with serious impacts on dog lovers, on animal welfare and on the stray population and the costs associated with managing it. The breeding often takes place in people’s homes, without the supervision of veterinarians and without proper training for the owners, who are improvising at being breeders. We should be looking for a solution by preventing the impacts, rather than by managing them.

The current lack of controls, due to poor regulation, is not only helping to fuel the illegal trade – it is a real public safety problem, as dogs are being acquired by people who are unsuitable dog owners and who often get rid of dogs that are challenging to look after, abandoning them or handing them over to shelters that are struggling with overcrowding.

Given that the latest European data shows that one third of the reports made to the Anti-Fraud Network concern illegal movements of domestic animals and that Article 13 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union says that ‘the Union and the Member States shall, since animals are sentient beings, pay full regard to the welfare requirements of animals’, can the Commission answer the following question:

Does it not consider it necessary to introduce new rules at EU level as soon as possible in order to combat the phenomenon of irresponsibly bred puppies, while also putting a stop to the illegal trade in pets in Europe and preventing animals from becoming strays?


Réponse - Commission européenne

Diffusée le 9 avril 2024

Answer given by Ms Kyriakides on behalf of the European Commission (10 April 2024)

On 7 December 2023, the Commission adopted a proposal for a regulation on the welfare of dogs and cats and their traceability (1). The proposal has entered the ordinary legislative procedure and is before the co-legislators.

Chapter II of that proposal introduces obligations for breeding establishments, including those accommodated in households, to comply with requirements arising from the five domains of welfare: nutrition, environment, health, behaviour, and mental state.

It also requires breeding establishments to be visited annually by a veterinarian, to be approved by the competent authorities and to ensure the competence of animal caretakers.

Chapter III of the proposal introduces traceability requirements for dogs and cats placed on or supplied to the Union market, including when offered for sale or adoption online.

A key objective of this chapter is to combat illegal trade in dogs and cats. Although the management of dog populations falls within the competence of the Member States and is not regulated at Union level, the provisions of this Chapter are expected to contribute to the control of stray dog population in the Member States.

1 ∙ ⸱ Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the welfare of dogs and cats and their traceability, COM/2023/769 final. | | ( | | )

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