The Welsh Government's legislation on animal welfare does not go far enough to tackle many of the issues surrounding dog breeding in Wales, the Welsh Liberal Democrats have claimed today.
The Animal Welfare (Breeding of Dogs) aims to stop 'puppy farms', where dogs may be kept in cramped conditions with little concern for their needs. However, campaigners have continuously voiced their concerns that the proposed maximum ratio of one member of staff to every 20 dogs is still too high.
William Powell AM, Welsh Liberal Democrats Shadow Environment Minister, said:
"This bill is yet another example of a Government bill that doesn't meet its aims.
"I have spoken on a number of occasions about the scourge of puppy farming, and I am disappointed to see that this issue has not been properly addressed in this bill. For that reason, my party can't support this inadequate bill.
"Many dogs can have litters of ten puppies or more; with the proposed ratio of one member of staff to twenty adult dogs, it is not inconceivable that a person could have responsibility for hundreds of animals. This will inevitably result in the welfare of those animals being compromised.
"This is not an acceptable situation and it is regrettable that, despite having urged Ministers in the past and in the face of overwhelming feedback from the consultation, this issue has not been addressed in the revised regulations. For these reasons, we have voted against the Government's proposals today."