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8th April 2024

Cats Protection welcomes select committee report on pet welfare and abuse.

Cats Protection has welcomed the findings of an inquiry into pet welfare and abuse which recommends new safeguards for cat breeding. 

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs committee launched the inquiry in February last year to look at issues including animal mutilation, pet smuggling and breeding.

Following a public call for evidence and a series of oral sessions which heard evidence from experts including Cats Protection, the committee has now published its findings. Its report outlines a series of recommendations to improve pet welfare and stamp out abuse and mistreatment.

Head of Advocacy, Campaigns & Government Relations for Cats Protection Madison Rogers said: “Pets are more than just a possession in the home, so we were pleased the select committee held this inquiry to look closely at how they are treated and how they can be better protected in law.

“Cats Protection has been increasingly concerned about the welfare of breeding cats which has gone unregulated for far too long. Sadly this means we are regularly seeing the effects of an exploitative market, such as sick and dying kittens, young cats with behavioural issues due to not being properly socialised and female cats which have been forced to breed time and time again.

“It’s also been extremely worrying to see the trend in cats with extreme characteristics that suffer from serious health defects. The Scottish Fold is one particular breed which is a huge concern – having been bred to have folded ears, this breed is almost guaranteed to have a life of pain and suffering.

“The inquiry has also recognised that local authorities are struggling to enforce some animal welfare legislation due to a lack of specialist knowledge and resource constraints and we welcome the recommendation to create a central unit of suitably trained inspectors to help improve collaboration and best practice.

“We are pleased the inquiry also recognised the dangers posed by illegal pet smuggling into the UK and Cats Protection welcomes its recommendations to clamp down on this. Cats Protection is supporting the current Private Members Bill on this issue.”

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