Dog breed­ing clam­p­down will force it un­der­ground, claim coun­cil­lors

Birmingham Post - - NEWS -

A COUN­CIL clam­p­down on dog breed­ing in Birm­ing­ham has been com­pared to pro­hi­bi­tion – with fears it could be driven un­der­ground.

New reg­u­la­tions for an­i­mal-re­lated busi­nesses will be in­tro­duced from Oc­to­ber 1.

They will ap­ply to more than 100 firms through­out the city in­clud­ing pet shops, ken­nels, dog breed­ers, rid­ing es­tab­lish­ments and mo­bile zoos.

Key changes in­clude in­creased coun­cil fees and a re­quire­ment for peo­ple to have a li­cence if they breed three lit­ters of dogs a year – a low­er­ing of the thresh­old from five lit­ters.

But city coun­cil­lor Bob Beauchamp voiced his reser­va­tions.

He said: “It would be like pro­hi­bi­tion al­most. In­stead of speakeasies com­ing up it would be breedeasies. It is go­ing un­der­ground big time. I don’t know whether we are ap­proach­ing it from the right an­gle.”

Cllr Si­mon Mor­rall agreed and said: “This is no dif­fer­ent to the war on drugs or pros­ti­tu­tion. When you make some­thing il­le­gal you drive it un­der­ground into the black mar­ket. So you make dog breed­ing worse if we are not help­ing busi­nesses to do it legally and prop­erly.”

He also branded the new fees ‘ex­tor­tion­ate’. The price for a new dog breed­ing or an­i­mal board­ing li­cence is to in­crease from £220 to £314 with re­newal prices ris­ing from £150 to £191.

Vikki All­wood, se­nior wel­fare of­fi­cer, stated the an­i­mal coun­cil was en­ti­tled to re­coup the costs of pro­cess­ing applications. She also added that now li­cence re­newals could be granted for up to three years if they were of good qual­ity, sav­ing some firms money be­cause at the mo­ment they have to re­new ev­ery 12 months.

Ms All­wood stated that it was very dif­fi­cult to iden­tify do­mes­tic dog breed­ers but as­sured that the coun­cil would now be do­ing more to mon­i­tor in­ter­net-based sell­ing.

> The coun­cil is im­pos­ing stricter rules for an­i­mal-re­lated busi­nesses

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