Success! In April 2020, England first introduced Lucy’s Law, which has now finally been introduced in almost the entirety of the UK, meaning that puppies and kittens can no longer be sold through third party sellers – such as pet shops or commercial dealers – unless they have bred the animals themselves. Instead, anyone looking to buy or adopt a puppy or kitten under six months must either deal directly with the breeder or an animal rehoming centre.
Lucy’s Law is named after the cavalier King Charles spaniel Lucy who suffered multiple health conditions including a curved spine, bald patches, epilepsy, and infused hips as a result of spending most of her life kept in a cage and used to breed litters of puppies at a Welsh puppy farm.
Currently, Lucy’s Law has been introduced in England, Wales and Scotland, with Northern Ireland bringing in this law shortly. After years of campaigning on this issue, FOUR PAWS UK welcomes this legislation, which will hopefully help to put an end to cruel puppy and kitten farming practices and ensure families will buy the healthiest and most socially confident pets from hereon.
"Lucy’s Law is a significant milestone for animal welfare, and a major step towards ending cruel puppy farming and smuggling. I’m so pleased that we finally have this crucial legislation which will help tackle the heart-breaking third-party trade of dogs and cats."
Lord Goldsmith, Minister for Animal Welfare
Remember, when buying a new puppy or kitten, always ask to see their mum and littermates and watch how they interact to see if they are healthy, happy and have a good temperament. Do not be afraid to report any suspicious activity to authorities or via our online reporting tool and we can investigate dodgy dealers. By raising awareness of illegal sellers to the local authorities, we can all help to protect the nation’s cats and dogs and give them the best start in life.