Dogs with cropped ears

A number of emails with the subject beginning 'Will you help protect dogs like Myrtle' have been received. These are concerned with cropping dogs ears. 

I quite agree that the practice of non-exempted mutilations such as cropping dogs' ears is abhorrent, and has rightly been banned in the UK for 15 years. The cropping of a dog’s ears is an offence under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. Since the Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Act 2021 came into force, anyone convicted of such an offence face being sent to prison for up to five years, or receiving an unlimited fine, or both.

However, the importation of dogs with non-exempted mutilations, such as cropped ears or docked tails, is still allowed under the current pet travel rules. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) ran a consultation on changes to the commercial and non-commercial movement of pets into Great Britain, which included a proposal to ban the import of dogs with cropped ears. Defra is carefully reviewing the feedback gathered from the consultation, and I look forward to reading the Government’s response in due course.

On 15th March the Animal Welfare (Import of Dogs, Cats and Ferrets) Bill had its second reading in the Commons.  This is a Private Mambers Bill, sponsored by my colleague Selaine Saxby, which seeks to tackle the import of dogs with cropped ears. I support the ambitions of this Bill which aims to introduce stringent measures to regulate the import of the titled pets, ensuring their health and safety during transportation and deterring illegal trade practices. 

The Bill is now at Committee Stage where is will be scrutinized in detail and will return to the House at a later date which is yet to be determined. I look forward to this BIll successfully passing through parliamentary process. 

You can read the Bill as presented at