Posted: Fri 8th Dec 2023

Welsh Government launches consultation on how animal activities are regulated

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Friday, Dec 8th, 2023

A consultation has been launched by the Welsh Government on how animal activities such as pet day care, dog walking services, and pet grooming are regulated.

This move is part of a broader initiative to enhance the welfare and treatment of animals across Wales.

The consultation, named “The Licensing of Animal Welfare Establishments, Activities and Exhibits,” aims to fill the regulatory gaps in a wide range of animal-related activities.

These activities include not only pet care facilities but also dog play parks, home boarding establishments like kennels and catteries, animal rehabilitation or conservation facilities, and various animal training and socialisation classes.

A key focus of the consultation is the issue of greyhound racing.

The government is considering licensing the owners, keepers, and trainers of racing dogs, including greyhounds, and is exploring the potential for a phased ban on dog racing in the future.

This aspect of the consultation reflects the significant public interest in the welfare of racing greyhounds.

Minister for Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths, said, “Our long-term ambition in Wales is for all animals to have a good life.”

“A National Model for the regulation of animal welfare will help bring us closer to this goal.”

“The licensing of animal-related activities would ensure the health and welfare of the animals involved are considered at all times, driving improvements in standards of keeping and enabling better enforcement where things go wrong.”

“A great deal of work has been carried out ahead of this consultation to identify the activities which are currently unlicensed, and where there are gaps in current arrangements.”

“I know greyhound racing remains a hot issue, and the consultation fulfills my commitment to the Petitions Committee by including a question on potential licensing for owners, keepers, and trainers of racing dogs, and seeking submissions of evidence for or against the consideration of a potential phased ban in the future.”

“There are strong views on all sides, and this consultation will help us to assess and consider all potential actions and build a crucial evidence base before any conclusions are drawn.”

“Any future regulatory measures or changes must be assessed based on evidence and would be subject to further consultation.”

The consultation includes a wide range of activities such as Pet Day Care, Dog Walking, Dog Play Parks, and Home Boarding for pets like kennels and catteries.

It also covers Pet Care facilities including animal rehabilitation or conservation facilities, for example, hedgehog hospitals, Pet Grooming, Pet Sitters, and Animal Trainers which encompass animal behaviourists, training and socialisation classes.

The scope extends to Rescue Centres, Animal Sanctuaries, Re-homing Centres, Fostering, and various forms of Animal Encounters such as pet therapy, cat cafes, ‘borrow my pet’ enterprises, puppy yoga, llama/alpaca walks, and pony painting parties.

Additionally, it includes Mobile and Static Animal Exhibits like birds of prey exhibits, reptile or exotic animal exhibits/handling, as well as the owners, keepers or trainers of racing dogs, including greyhounds, Livery Services, and keeping Primates as pets.

The 12-week consultation is available here.

Licensing of animal welfare establishments, activities and exhibits | GOV.WALES

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