Wales dared to do it and it is being enforced this month. Welsh dog breeders have until the end of April to comply with the stricter welfare criteria for dogs and puppies they whelp, own and breed.
From Friday 30th April 2015, when the legislation changes, Welsh dog breeders will need to act in accordance with the minimum socialisation requirements for puppies, and abide by the minimum staff-to-adult-dog ratio.
These new stricter rules are destined to dog breeders who own three or more breeding bitches.
Now that the legislation becomes stricter for full-time professional dog breeders in Wales, those targeted by this change must ensure a minimum of one human attendant to 20 adult dogs. The socialisation plan for puppies must also be accompanied by enrichment programmes for all dogs.
There has been increasing public concern in recent years over the way in which some dogs are bred in Wales, including in licensed premises.
The standards that are being introduced at the end of this next month are just one example of the Welsh Government’s work to improve dog welfare.
Rebecca Evans, Deputy Minister for Farming & Food