30 per cent of British dog buyers don’t care if their dog was imported illegally

UNITED KINGDOM-NEWS AND COMMENT: A survey of 200 dog buyers carried out by the charity Dogs Trust informs us that, currently, almost one third of purchasers of companion dogs are not interested if the dog that they want to adopt has been illegally imported. They turn a blind eye to it. This appears to be an extension of the surge in puppies bought in the UK during coronavirus pandemic lockdowns.

Cockapoos are popular during the pandemic lockdown
Cockapoos are popular during the pandemic lockdown. Image by Paul Mears from Pixabay

My interpretation of this rather shocking statistic is that such is the desire to adopt a dog at this time that people are putting to one side a very important aspect of dog adoption which is that the dog should be healthy, well socialised and bred properly in a proper facility. This aspect of dog adoption is important because it ensures a much higher success rate in terms of the human-animal relationship over the lifetime of the animal.

It’s a known fact that a lot of these impulse dog adoptions fail. Also because the purchaser pays an inflated price for the dog of their choice they are unwilling to abandon their dog to a animal rescue centre and therefore they may sell the animal online which can encourage further failures in the adoption process. The true victim is the dog. People who ignore dog smuggling are unlikely to be committed to being responsible for their dog for the animal’s lifetime.

The survey also found that 44% said they would buy a puppy online despite knowing that there is a likelihood that they’re going to be scammed because they know somebody who has been scammed or who had a poor experience.

Dogs Trust rescued 257 illegally imported dogs between March and the end of November. They also rescued sixteen pregnant bitches who gave birth to 61 puppies. The sixty-one puppies were valued at about £570,000 reflecting the enormous prices of dogs at this time, which engenders scamming and the illegal trade.

During the research over six weeks they found that ninety-one of the animals advertised in 502 adverts had been imported. Sixteen of them were too young to have been imported legally.


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