I was reading an article in tonight's local paper 'Shropshire Star' about a Rottweiler puppy who had to be released by firemen when he got his head caught in mesh at his owner's home. I was horrified to read that the puppy was "Six weeks old and had only been in its new home for a week" ?? But even more horrified to see that this poor unfortunate and in my opinion, miserable looking puppy had a docked tail! How on earth can this happen?
but more importantly, who can I report it to? I have been searching web sites without success.
I have a five year old Rottie whose tail was docked before we had her and I think it is the most barbaric thing anyone can do to a dog. I am sure some dogs think my dog is aggressive only because there is an absence of expression ie no tail and I also had great difficulty when we first had her to 'read' her mood from a distance. I would never part with her but how I wish I could give her a tail transplant and give her back what was so cruelly robbed from her.
Look forward to hearing from you ref the little tail less pup
A few issues ago we exposed a loophole in docking laws which meant that breeders who wanted to continue to dock are now taking their new born litters over to Ireland for docking where it's still legal. We believe some breeders are probably DIY docking at home and just claiming they have taken their dogs to Ireland.
It is very disappointing to see this pointless cosmetic operation continuing - and dogs are still dying when botched DIY docks go wrong. Here's a link to a recent prosecution involving Rotties docked with scissors and boiling water.
We feel the show world needs to make an example for the pet market to follow and dogs with tails should be seen to be the norm. Unfortunately the show world is taking advantage of this Irish loophole, too. Many young top winning dogs could not be shown at Crufts this year as the law prevents dogs docked after 6th April 2007 (28th March for shows held in Wales) being shown at events where the public pay to come in. The law does also prevent dogs docked legally in the UK, for example working gundogs.
However, one apparently docked puppy was exhibited at Crufts the year and even though this has been drawn to the KC's attention they have reportedly replied that they feel it isn't up to them to deal with it and that it should be reported to the appropriate authorities although they say they would co-operate should action be taken. I understand they wouldn't have taken the £35 necessary to lodge a complaint even if someone had complained through their own complaints structure.
The KC stopped ear cropping virtually overnight by banning all cropped dogs from being exhibited. The King of the day - their patron - was the catalyst to this change. If only they'd take strong action against docking maybe we'd get fewer of these awful cases of people attempting to chop off their pup's tail at home in the belief they can get a few more pounds for their pups if they chop off their tails.
Tail removal for a misplaced human concept of beauty needs to be recognised as a cruel, unecessary mutilation and should have no place in the show ring or indeed 21st Century Britain.
So who do we report suspected illegal docking to? The RSPCA? The police?
I've asked the Anti-Docking Alliance and will publish the answer.
Beverley Cuddy, Editor
A vet and three others have been charged with illegal docking. Click here for the story.